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EDITION DE LUXE TIREE SUR PAPIER WHATMAN. 






Nouvelle Edition d 'environ 400 pages. Prix 70 francs. 
ENRICHIE DE PLUS DE SOIXANTE GRAVURES. 

LE VIOLON : 

SES FAMEDX LDTBIERS ET IEURS IMITATEDRS. 

PAR 

GEORGE HART. 

TRADUIT DE L'AtJGLAIS PAR ALPHONSE ROYER. 



L'Edition in Octavo 12 francs. 

La nouvelle Edition soigneusement revue et augmentee de cet impor- 
tant ouvrage contient la liste descriptive de Luthiers la plus complete 
qui ait paru jusqu' ici : elle off re de plus au lecteur une notice circon- 
stanciee sur ANTOINE STRADIVARIUS. 

L'auteur a eclaire cette notice d'un jour nouveau et y a jete un vif 
eclat par les details pleins d'interet qu'il a puises dans les manuscnts 
authentiques de Cremone et par les nombreux extraits qu'il a tires des 
pieces originales de la correspondance du grand artiste. 



Extrait du " Menestrel." 

"L'ouvrage tres important que voici est une traduction faite sur la 
cinquieme edition publiee en Angleterre. Je crois avoir rendu compte, 
ici meme, de la premiere edition, lorsqu'elle parut a Londres il y a 
quelques annees. Depuis lors, 1'auteur a ameliore, agrandi, complete 
son ceuvre, et le volume superbe qu'il nous offre aujourd'hui parait devoir 
etre un texte definitif . 

"L'ouvrage, fort interessant, de M. Hart, le plus complet en son 
genre que nous connaissions en France, est divise en quinze sections ou 
chapitres. Dans la premiere section, 1'auteur a essaye de tracer une 
histoire hypothetique du violon, histoire malheureusement impossible a 
faire a cause de son obscurite. Le chapitre consacre a la construction 
est plus solide. Puis viennent 1'examen des precedes des luthiers des 
differentes ecoles: italienne, francaise, allemande et anglaise, et les 
biographies de ces luthiers (203 notices de luthiers italiens, 160 pour les 
Francais, 158 pour les Allemands, 152 pour les Anglais). Enfin, la 
treizieme section a pour titre : le Violon et ses^ admirateurs, la qua- 
torzieme presente une Esquisse du prog-res et du developpement de I'art du 
Violon, et la quinzieme, dont 1'utiiite est moindre, est consacree a une 
serie d'anecdotes. 

"En resume, le livre de M. Hart est tres curieux, tres utile et fort 
interessant. II ne me reste plus qu'a souhaiter que 1'auteur nous donne 
maintenant une traduction d'un autre ouvrage, tres precieux, qu'il a 
public recemment sous ce titre : The Violin and its Music (Londres, 
Dulau, 1881, in-4). II nous aura rendu alors un double et signale 
service." ARTHUR POUGIN. 



HART & SON, 28, WARDOUR STRE \ LONDON, W. 



TTbe Diolin anfc its /Ifcusic 

BY 

GEORGE HART 

Illustrated with several Steel Engravings of 
Eminent Violinists. 

FORMING THE COMPANION VOLUME 

TO 

THE VIOLIN AND ITS FAMOUS 
MAKERS. 



" The broad range of interest in the book which appears at the very 
beginning, and the evident appreciation of the romantic, as well as the 
practical side of the question, shows that the man is not merged in the 
specialist, and that outsiders, as well as experts, may look to find 
amusement as well as instruction therein. The range of the book is 
of the widest." Saturday Review. 

" A sufficient account is given of the various schools of composers and 
virtuosi in the musical countries of Europe, from Corelli down to Vieux- 
temps and Joachim. The author's judgment is in most cases fair and 
unbiassed, and his diction agreeably free from the current jargon of 
musical criticism. . . . The value of Mr. Hart's volume is increased by 
carefully engraved portraits of Corelli, Viotti, Paganini, and other 
masters." Times. 



QUARTO EDITION . . . , 31/6 
OCTAVO (without Portraits) . . io/- 




PAGANINl'S GIUSEPPE GUARNERI. 
Date 1743. 

(IN THE MUNICIPAL PALACE, GENOA.) 



Frontispiece.] 



A. H. SCOTT 



THE VIOLIN 

ITS FAMOUS MAKERS 
AND THEIR IMITATORS 



BY 



GEORGE HART 



WITH 

NUMEROUS WOOD ENGRAVINGS FROM PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE WORKS 
OF STRADIVARI, GUARNERI, AMATI, AND OTHERS, AND 
ADDITIONS AND EMENDATIONS BY THE 
SON AND TOWRY PIPER 



UNIVERSITY OF TORON 




"To perfect that wonder of travel the locomotive has perhaps not 
required the expenditure of more mental strength and application, than 
to perfect that wonder of music the Violin." W. E. GLADSTONE. 



LONDON 

DULAU AND CO., LIMITED, 37, SOHO SQUARE, W. 

SCHOTT AND CO., 159, REGENT STREET. 

1909 

[AH rights reserved.] 



L 





PREFACE TO THE ENLARGED AND 
REVISED EDITION 



^HE favourable reception accorded to the 
-*- previous editions of this work has not only 
added greatly to the pleasure attending the pre- 
paration of a new and revised edition, but has 
encouraged me to spare no effort within my power 
to render the volume as interesting and complete 
as possible. In making these endeavours, the bulk 
of the book has been necessarily increased by 
additional information, spread over all the sections 
of the work, but chiefly on those which treat of 
the Early History of the leading instrument, and 
the Italian branches of the subject. 

It is in connection with the Italian divisions of 
the book that the reader will discover, I venture 
to hope, information which he will regard as 
interesting in its character, besides being of some 
historical value. The greater part of this new 
matter has been obtained from original MSS. 



x PREFACE 

belonging to the trustees of the Civic Museum 
at Cremona, which Institution is located in the 
palace bequeathed to the citizens, together with its 
contents, by the Marchese Ponzoni. In the year 
1872, Dr. F. Robolotti, the learned historiographer 
of the town, and a distinguished physician, and 
the Marchese Senatore Araldi Erizzo, presented 
to the Institution referred to an important collection 
of rare books and documents illustrative of the 
history of the City of Cremona. Among these 
are two sets of MSS., numbered respectively 729 
and 431, the contents of which shed much light 
on the Italian sections of our subject, and constitute 
the source of the principal portion of the additional 
information contained in the following pages. The 
first-named MS. is the work of Don Desiderio 
Arisi, a monk of the order of St. Jerome, who in 
the quiet of his cell in the Convent of St. Sigismondo 
set himself the task of writing brief notices of 
Cremonese worthies. The MS. is dated 1720, 
and includes a most interesting account of the 
patronage enjoyed by Antonio Stradivari, together 
with several items of information of more or less 
worth, relative to the famous Violin-maker. In 
passing, it may be mentioned that Don Desiderio 
Arisi was intimate with Stradivari, and gained his 



PREFACE xi 

knowledge of the facts he recorded from the artist 
himself. The second-named MSS., from which 
extracts have been made, are dated 1823. These 
contain references to the principal makers of 
Cremona, combined with critical remarks on their 
works from the pen of Vincenzo Lancetti, a 
Cremonese poet and biographer. The information 
contained in these MSS. was chiefly received from 
Count Cozio di Salabue in the course of correspon- 
dence between him and Lancetti. 

Nearly the whole of the extracts to which the 
reader's attention has been directed were given to 
me as far back as the year 1875, when the original 
edition of this work was in the press. Finding it 
impossible to make adequate use of them, in 
consequence of the volume being partly printed, 
I decided to insert a few items at the end of the 
notice of Antonio Stradivari, and to hold over the 
remainder in order to distribute the information 
among the notices of the several makers in a future 
edition. 

I am indebted for the knowledge of the existence 
of the Arisi and Lancetti MSS., and for their 
contents, to my friend Signer Federico Sacchi, 1 

1 Signor Sacchi is the author of 

i. " Cenni sulla vita e le opere di Agostino Aglio pittor 
Cremonese." Cremona, 1868. 8vo. 



xii PREFACE 

who during his researches among the Robolotti 
collection had free access to all the original docu- 
ments, and whose family has long lived near the 
house occupied by Stradivari. With these ad- 
vantages, it is almost needless to remark that my 
friend possessed ample means of aiding me in my 
endeavours to learn much concerning the makers 
of his native city. Taking as he does a deep and 
enthusiastic interest in the past history of Cremonese 
art, he spared no effort to obtain for me all the 
information possible. To him I am also indebted 
for the contents of the correspondence relative to 
the purchase, by Count Cozio di Salabue, of the 
tools used by Antonio Stradivari, and for the same 
having been placed at my disposal by the Marquis 
dalla Valle. In making these acknowledgments, I 
desire to tender Signor Sacchi my warmest thanks 
for the interest he has taken in my undertaking. 1 
The Section containing the Anecdotes has been 
recruited by additional Miscellanea, including 
" Hudibras and the Champion Crowdero." In 
placing this piece of wit and humour before my 

2. " Notizie pittoriche Cremonesi." Cremona, 1872. 4to. 
3.. "I Tipografi Ebrei di Soncino." Cremona, 1877. 4to. 
4. " Annali Tipografici della Cittae provincia di Cremona," 
and many other memoirs on Cremonese printers and painters. 
1 Signor Sacchi died in 1902. ED. 



PREFACE xiii 

readers, I have endeavoured to do so in a form 
as connected as possible, by the selection of 
passages likely to conduce to that end, without 
trespassing too much on space, and on the reader's 
patience. 

I am indebted to Mr. G. D. Bishopp for the table 
containing the amount of tension of Violin strings, 
and their downward pressure. The information 
therein contained will doubtless be acceptable to 
many of my readers. 

I owe to M. le Chevalier Kraus, of Florence, 
the pleasure of including among the engravings 
those of the instruments made by Antonio 
Stradivari for the Grand Duke of Florence, he 
having obtained for me the necessary photographs. 

In conclusion, I have to thank my young friend 
Mr. Allan Fea for the two illustrations forming 
the head and tail pieces to " Hudibras and the 
Champion Crowdero." 

28, War dour Street, London, 1884. 




PENDING the completion of a more costly 
revised version of the late Mr. Hart's work, 
the editors, in compliance with what seems to be 
a widespread public desire, have decided to reprint 
the volume, as issued in popular form and finally 
corrected by the author in 1887, but with additions 
and certain emendations desirable in order to bring 
it into accord with the present state of knowledge, 
and to enchance its value as a work of reference. 
To this end the names of a considerable number 
of makers, either unknown at the time, or not 
deemed of sufficient prominence for insertion in the 
edition of 1887, have been incorporated in the text, 
together with particulars of the distinctive features 
of their work ; and the notices relating to others 
have, where needful, been modified or recast. In 
other respects the book remains substantially as 
the author left it. 

28, Wardour Street 

November, 1909. 



CONTENTS 



SECTION I. THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN. 

PAGE 

I. General observations Early History involved in obscurity and 
vague conjecture Jubal, Orpheus, and Apollo Views of 
Early Historians of Music, as to Asiatic and Scandinavian 
origin respectively Ravanon, King of Ceylon, and the 
"Ravanastron " Researches of Sanscrit Scholars Suggested 
Arabian origin of the Ribeca, or Rebec, and the Rehab of 
the Moors Early Egyptian instruments Moorish musical 
influence in Spain The Troubadours and Trouveres in 
Northern France, and the Gigeours of Germany i-ii 

2. Early evidence of Bowed Instruments in the north of Europe 
Presumed Scandinavian origin of the German Geige The 
Hon. Roger North's " Memoirs of Music " Martinus Ger- 
bertus, his " De Cantu et Musica Sacra" Paul Lacroix' 
" Arts of the Middle Ages " Earliest known representations 
of Bowed Instruments, sixth to ninth century The Manu- 
script of St. Blasius The Cheli or Chelys Saxon Fiddle in 
the Cottonian Manuscripts, and in Strutt's " Sports and 
Pastimes " The early Saxons' love of Music The Saxon 
Fithele in the time of the Norman Conquest The Geige in 
France, and the Jongleurs, " dancers, jugglers, and buffoons " 
Domestic Music in Germany and the Low Countries in the 
sixteenth century The Viol and the Madrigal Music in 
Italy Adrian Willaert, "The Father of the Madrigal" 
Northern Musicians attracted to Italian Courts Develop- 
ment of the Madrigal in Italy High standard of early 
Italian work, but under German teaching The Viols of 
Brensius of Bologna Silvestro Ganassi, his work on the 
Viol Duiffoprugcar and Gasparo da Salo and the develop- 
ment of the Violin The Fretted Finger-board The Violono 
or Bass Viol Five-stringed Viols The three-stringed 
Fiddle, or Geige, attributed to Andrea Amati, altered by the 
Brothers Mantegazza to a four-stringed Violin Advent of 
the four-stringed Violin ascribed to Gasparo da Salo ... '12-26 

xvii . # 



xviii CONTENTS 

SECTION II. THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE VIOLIN. 

PAGE 

. v The present form of the Violin the result of much research and 
experiment, but perfected by the great Cremonese makers 
Hogarth's "Line of Beauty" exemplified in the Violin The 
requisites necessary to the due appreciation of the grace and 
properties of the Violin, and its exquisite power of expres- 
sion Its acoustical properties Varieties of woods used in 
its construction Methods adopted, and choice of material, 
by the great Brescian and Cremonese makers The " whole- 
back" and "slab-back" The constituent parts of the Violin 
System of placing the sound-bar Properties and position 
of the sound-post, and of the bridge ; the neck ; the finger- 
board ; purfling, &c., &c. The sound-holes of different 
makers Needed cautions as to repairing good instruments 27-42 

SECTION III. ITALIAN AND OTHER STRINGS. 

Importance of the Strings in the economy of the Violin Adrien 
Le Roy's instructions " How to know Strings " Thomas 
Mace and " Venetian Catlins " Character of the different 
manufactures of Strings Superiority of the Italian The 
raw material not supplied by the feline race Rules to be 
observed in choosing Strings Modern improvements in 
Stringing The Strings of Lindley and Dragonetti Covered 
Strings Experiments on the strain and pressure of Strings 43-56 

SECTION IV. THE ITALIAN SCHOOL. 

( A glance at the rise, culmination, and decadence of Art in Italy, 

" and the Violin as connected therewith The Italians far in 

advance of other nations in the manufacture The five 

Schools of Italian makers Roger North on the demand for 

Italian Violins Brescia the cradle of the manufacture ... 57-99 

SECTION V. THE ITALIAN VARNISH. 

x The formation of the Italian Varnish a secret lost to the world 
Lustrous character of that of Cremona Characteristics of 
the four classes of Italian Varnish Conjecture as to the loss 
of the secret Influence of the different Varnishes on the 
tone of the Violin 70-76 

SECTION VI. ITALIAN MAKERS. 

Acevo Albanesi Albani Aletzie Alvani AMATI, ANDREA ; evi- 
dence as to date of birth ; his Violins small ; founded the 
School of Cremona ; probably a pupil of Gasparo da Said ; 
his model high, and sound-hole inelegant ; his varnish deep 
golden ; his " Charles IX. Set " of twenty-four Violins, six 
Tenors and eight Basses Amati, Niccolo AMATI, the 



CONTENTS xlx 

Brothers ANTONIO and GIROLAMO ; probable date of birth ; 
comparison of the respective work, material, and tone of the 
two brothers AMATI, NICCOLO, son of Girolamo ; date of 
birth and death ; the greatest of his illustrious family ; 
gradual change in style; the "Grand Amati," followed by 
his great pupil, Stradivari ; its exquisite proportions and 
character ; singular beauty of his material, and elegance of 
design ; differences between Niccolo Amati and his several 
copyists, Italian, German, and English AMATI, GIROLAMO ; 
date of birth ; his work ascribed to other makers ; character 
of his instruments and his varnish ; the last of the Amatis 
Ambrosi, Pietro Anselmo, Pietro Antoniazzi, Gaetano 
Antonio of Bologna Antonio, Ciciliano Assalone, Gasparo 77-94 

Bagatella, Antonio Bagatella, Pietro BALESTRIERI, TOMMASO ; 
probably a pupil of Stradivari ; his work rough, but vigorous, 
tone and varnish good ; his instruments rising in value 
Bassiano, Lute-maker, Rome Bellosio, Anselmo Bente, 
Matteo BERGONZI, CARLO, pupil of Antonio Stradivari ; his 
work closely resembling that of his great master, and of the 
highest class ; increasing appreciation ; comparison of his 
instruments with those of Stradivari and Giuseppe Guarneri ; 
character of his varnish, &c. ; Violoncellos and Double- 
Basses of this maker Bergonzi, Michel Angelo BERGONZI, 
NICCOLO ; character of his work Bergonzi Bertolotti (see 
Salo) Zosimo Bergonzi, Carlo Bergonzi, Benedetto 
Bertassi, Ambrogio Bimbi, B. Borelli, Andrea Brensio, 
Girolamo Brescia, da, Battista Broschi, Carlo Budiani, 
Giovita Busseto, Giovanni 95-104 

Calcagni, Bernardo Calvarola, Bartolommeo Camilli, Camillo 
CAPPA, GIOFFREDO, pupil of the Brothers Amati ; character 
of his work, in Violins and Violoncellos Casini, Antonio- 
Castro Catenar, Enrico Celioniati, Gian Francesco Cerin, 
Marco Antonio Ceruti, Giovanni Battista, a prolific work- 
man Ceruti, Giuseppe Ceruti, Enrico, son of Giuseppe ; 
his work much valued by Italian players ; exhibited in 
London and Milan Exhibitions Cristofori, Bartolommeo 
Circapa, Tommaso Cocco, Cristoforo Contreras, Joseph 
Cordano, Jacopo Filippo Costa, Pietro Antonio dalla ; skilful 
copier of Amati 104-110 

Dardelli, Pietro ; a Franciscan Monk ; his Viols and Lutes 
Despine, A. Dominicelli, Ferrara Duiffoprugcar, Magno 
(Magnus Tieffenbrucker) DUIFFOPRUGCAR, GASPAR ; high 
character of his Viols 110-112 

Farinato, Paolo Ficker, Johann Christian Picker, Johann Gottlieb 

Fiorillo, Giovanni Frei, Hans, Lute and Viol-maker 112-113 

GABRIELLI, GIOVANNI BATTISTA ; his Violoncellos and Violins of 
high character Gaffino, Giuseppe GAGLIANO, ALESSANDRO, 
pupil of Antonio Stradivari ; character of his work 



xx CONTENTS 

PAGE 

Gagliano, Gennaro Gagliano, Niccolo Gagliano, Ferdi- 
nando Gagliano, Giuseppe Gagliano, Giovanni, Antonio, 
and Raffaele Galbusera, C. A. Garani, Michel Angelo 
Garani, Niccolo Gaspara da Salo (see Salo) Gatinari, Fran- 
cesco Geroni, Domenico Ostiano Gibertini, Antonio 
GOBETTI (Gobit) FRANCESCO ; comparisons of his work with 
those of Montagnana, Santo Serafino, and Ruggeri Gofriller, 
Matteo Gofriller, Francesco Gragnani, Antonio GRAN- 
CINO, PAOLO, pupil of Niccolo Amati ; a true artist ; classed 
with Stradivari, Bergonzi, Amati, and Guarneri ; his Violas 
and Violoncellos Grancino, Giovanni Grancino, Giovanni 
Battista Grancino, Francesco Grulli, Pietro GUADAGNINI, 
LORENZO, and Giovanni Battista ; high character of their 
work Guadagnini, Gaetano Guadagnini, Giuseppe Gua- 
dagnini, Carlo Guadagnini, Antonio GUARNERI, ANDREA, 
v the pioneer of his family ; worked with Stradivari and Niccolo 
Amati GUARNERI, GIUSEPPE, son of Andrea ; his Violins, 
Violas, and Violoncellos GUARNERI, PIETRO, brother of 
Andrea GUARNERI, PIETRO, grandson of Andrea GUAR- 
NERI, GIUSEPPE (del Gesu) ; his monogram and cypher ; 
evidence of his birth ; sketch of his life, and character- 
istics of his work ; comparison with Stradivari and Gasparo 
da Salo ; his "three epochs ; " lustrous quality of his varnish ; 
different characters of his wood ; the tradition of his " Prison 
Fiddles"; a "Prison Joseph " Guidanti, Giovanni 

Guillami 113-147 

Harton, Michael 147 

Kerlino, Joan 147 

Lagetto, Luigi Landolfi, Carlo Ferdinando ; original and gene- 
rally good quality of his work Lanza, Antonio Maria 
Lavazza, Santino Lavazza, Antonio Linarolli, Venture 
Loly, Jacopo 147, 148 

MAGGINI, GIOVANNI PAOLO, pupil and follower of Gasparo da Salo ; 
other makers' productions frequently attributed to him ; com- 
parison of his work with that of Da Salo MALER (Lutinist) ; 
termed the " Stradivari of Lutes ; " Thomas Mace on the art of 
judging Lutes and Viols MANTEGAZZA, PIETRO GIOVANNI ; 
eminent as a restorer Maratti Mariani, Antonio Meiberi, 
Francesco Mezadri, Alessandro Mezadri, Francesco 
MONTAGNANA, DOMENICO, pupil of Antonio Stradivari ; 
splendid specimens of his art still extant ; his cognomen, 
" The Mighty Venetian ; " rising value of his instruments ; 
comparison with Stradivari and Bergonzi ; superior character 

of his varnish Montaldi, Gregorio Morella 149-158 

Nadotti, Giuseppe Nella, Raffaele 158 

Ortega 158 

Pandolfi, Antonio PANORMO, VINCENZO ; follower of Antonio 
Stradivari ; residence in London and in Ireland ; his struggles 



CONTENTS xxi 

PAGE 

with adversity ; light and graceful character of his work 
Pansani, Antonio Pasta, Antonio Pasta, Domenico Picino 
Plainer, Michel Pollusca, Antonio PRESSENDA, GIOVANNI 
FRANCESCO ; superior work and varnish studied in Cremona ; 
contrast with contemporary workers ; humble origin ; his 
connection with Storioni, and with Polledro, the Violinist ; 

his models, Stradivari and Amati ... 158-163 

Racceris Rinaldi, Gioffredo Rocca, J. A. Rota, Giovanni 
Rodiani Rovetta RUGGERI, FRANCESCO (" II Per ") ; early 
artistic genius ; foremost position of his family in Cremona ; 
pupil of Niccolo Amati and worthy of him ; brilliancy of his 
varnish RUGGERI, GIACINTO RUGGERI, VINCENZO 

ROGERI, PlETRO GlACOMO RUGGERI, GlAMBATTISTA 

ROGERI, GIOVANNI BATTISTA (" Bononiensis," from or settled 

in Bologna) ; his instruments of large Amati pattern ... 163-167 

SACCHINI, SALO GASPARO'DA ("The Great Brescian,") his real 
name Bertolotti ; essentially a maker of Viols ; primitive 
character of his instruments ; evidence as to date of his 
work ; Ganassi's work on the Art of Playing the Viol ; 
six-stringed and four-stringed Viols ; Martin Agricola and 
his " Musica Instrumentalis ; " Quatuor of instruments, 
Decantus, Altus, Tenor, and Bassus ; foundation by Da Salo 
of Italian Violin-making ; gradual and tentative development 
of his system ; high value of his labours as a pioneer ; chief 
characteristics of his work ; his nice discrimination in choice 
of material ; Signer Dragonetti's four Double-Basses of this 
maker, and his presentation of one of them to the Monastery 
St. Mark's, Venice Sanoni, Giovanni Battista Santo, Gio- 
vanni Sanzo Sardi Sellas, Matteo SERAFINO, SANTO ; 
exquisite finish of his work ; variation of model ; high character 
of varnish and work ; his method of cutting ; copied Amati 
, and Stainer Sneider, Josefo Socchi, Vincenzo Sorsana, 
\ Stregner Magno Storioni ; follower of Guarneri del Gesu ; 

\his freak as to placing the sound-holes ; creditable character 
of his work in several respects STRADIVARI, ANTONIO ; his 
renown beyond that of all others ; researches as to records of 
his life ; evidence as to date of birth, marriage, and death ; 
Genealogical Table of his family ; the inventory of his work 
remaining at his death ; similarity of his early work to that 
of his master, Niccolo Amati ; evidences as to later changes 
of style ; his inheritance of his aged master's tools and 
models ; his purchase of his house in Cremona ; contem- 
porary appreciation of his merits ; his set of Violins, Altos, 
and Violoncellos for King James of England ; valuable 
evidence of Desiderio Arisi, and of Vincenzo Lancetti ; 
Count Cozio's purchase of Stradivari's models, tools, and 
drawings, and their present possession by the Marquis 
Dalla Valle ; instruments made for the Duke of Natalona, 



xxii CONTENTS 

PAGE 

the Duke of Savoy, and the Duke of Modena ; the 
" Long Strad " ; instruments for the Spanish Court ; 
letter from the Marquis Ariberti ; a "Chest of Viols;" a 
-"Concerto;" Stradivari's "golden period," 1700; descrip- 
tion of his instruments of this date ; the " Betts Strad ; " 
guiding principles as to differences of construction and 
quality of material ; the "Dolphin Strad," its exquisite 
beauty ; tranquil character of Stradivari's life ; war in 
Cremona ; Prince Eugene and Villeroy ; visit of Philip V. of 
Spain to Italy, and entry into Cremona ; set of instruments 
for Charles III. of Spain, and for Archduke Charles of 
Austria ; letter from Lorenzo Giustiniani ; set of Violins for 
Augustus, King of Poland ; Veracini, the Solo-Violinist, and 
Stradivari ; last epoch of the great maker ; quality of his 
instruments at this period ; comparison with those of con- 
temporaries ; place of his burial, in the Chapel of the Rosary, 
with diagram ; Polledro's description of the personality of 
\. Stradivari ; singular apathy of the Cremonese as to their 
''^ great deceased citizen STRADIVARI, FRANCESCO and OMO- 
BONO, sons and successors of Antonio ; character of their 
work ; correspondence between his son and grandson, Paolo 
and Antonio, and the agents of Count Cozio di Salabue, 
relative to the purchase of the models, tools, and drawings of 

the Maestro Sursano, Spirito 168-219 

Tanegia, Carlo Antonio Taningard, Giorgio TECCHLER, DAVID ; 
his instruments of German and Italian styles, finely formed, 
and of good quality ; his Violoncellos of large size Testore, 
Carlo Giuseppe Testore, Carlo Antonio Testore, Paolo 
Antonio Tieffenbrucker, Leonardo Todini, Michele ; his 
method of stringing the Violono Tononi, Carlo Tononi, 
Carlo Antonio Tononi, Giovanni' Tononi, Felice Tononi, 

Guido Trapani, Raffaele 219-222 

Valenzano, G. Vetrini, Battista Vimercati 222 

Wenger 222 

Zannetto, Pellegrino Zanola, Giovanni Battista Zanotti, Antonio 

Zanti, Alessandro Zanure, Pietro Zenatto, Pietro ... 222-223 



SECTION VII. THE FRENCH SCHOOL. 

Origin of the French School in the I7th century ; followers of 
the Brescian and Cremonese types ; mediocre character of 
their earlier efforts, with a few exceptions De Comble and 
the second French School ; Pique, Lupot, and Francois 
. Gand ; Silvestre, of Lyons Introduction of the practice of 
Fiddle-baking ; its failure The copyist, and the Mirecourt 
factory, the " Manchester of Fiddle-making ; " its destructive 
influence on the interests of true art 224-230 






CONTENTS xxiii 

SECTION VIII. FRENCH MAKERS. 

PAGE 

Aldric Allard Amelot Aubry Augiere 231 

Bachelier Bassot Bernadel, Sebastien Philippe Bertrand, 
Nicolas Boivin, Claude Boquay, Jacques ; follower of 
Girolamo Amati Borlon, Artus, or Arnould Borlon (or 
Porlon), Pierre, Viol-maker Borlon, Jean Borlon, Fran- 
cois Boullangier, C. Boumeester Bourdet, Sebastien 
Bourdet, Jacques Boussu, Eterbeck Breton, Le Brugere 231-234 
CALOT Castagnery, Andrea Castagnery, Jean Paul Champion, 
Rene Chanot, Francois CHANOT, GEORGES ; an inde- 
fatigable worker, and close copier of Stradivari and Guarneri 
Chanot, Georges, fils Chanot, F. Chanot, G. A. 
Chappuy, Nicolas Augustin Chardon, Joseph Charotte 
Chevrier, Andre Augustin Claudot, Charles Claudot, 
Augustin Clement Cliquot, Henri Cliquot, Louis Alex- 

andre Cunault Cuypers Cuny 234-237 

Daniel Darche David DE COMBLE, AMBROISE ; said to have 
worked with Stradivari ; a skilful worker ; good material 
and varnish Dehommais Delanoix Delaunay Dele- 
planque, Gerard Derazey Despons, Antoine Dieulafait 
Droulot Ducheron, Mathurin Du Mesnil, Jacques ... 237, 238 

Eesbroek, Jean Van, Lute-maker ... ... 238,239 

Falaise Fendt, or Fent Fleury, Benoist Fourrier, Nicolas ... 239 

GAILLARD GAND, FRAN?OIS, pupil and successor of Nicolas Lupot ; 

an excellent maker and repairer Gand, Adolphe Gand, 

Eugene Gavinies, Francois Germain, Joseph Louis 

Germain, Emile Gbsselin Grand-Gerard Grandson Fils 

Grosset, Paul Francois Guersan, Louis 239-242 

Hel Henry, Jean Baptiste Felix Henry, Charles Henry, Octave 

Henry, Eugene Hofman, Mathias 242 

Jacobs, Hendrik ; his work often mistaken for that of Niccolo Amati 
Jacobs Jacquot, Charles (pere) Jacquot, Charles (fils) 

Jeandel, P. N. 242-243 

Koliker 243 

Lambert, Jean Nicolas Lapaix Laprevotte, Etienne Leclerc 
Lecomte Leduc, Pierre Lefebvre Le Jeune, Francois 
Le Pileur, Pierre Lesclop, Francois Henry Louis Louvet, 
Jean Lupot, Jean Lupot, Laurent Lupot, Francis 
LUPOT, NICOLAS ; maker to the Conservatoire ; an excellent 
workman, and named " The French Stradivari," and " The 
king of modern makers ; " characteristics of his work 243-247 
Marquis de Lair Mast, Jean Laurent Mast Maucotel, Charles 
Maucotel, Charles Adolphe Medard, Francois Medard, 
Nicolas Medard, Jean Mennegand, Charles ; distinguished 
as a maker and repairer, and also as a " cutter" Miremont, 

Claude Augustin Modessier Mougenot 247-250 

Namy Nezot Nicolas, Francois Nicolas, Fourrier Nicolas, 

Didier Nicolas, Joseph 250 



xxiv CONTENTS 

PACK 

OUVRARD, Jean 250 

Pacherele, Michel Pacherel Paul, Saint PIERRAY, CLAUDE; 
an excellent workman, following Amati Piete, N. 
PIQUE, F. L. ; close copyist of Stradivari ; excellent work 
and material Pirot, Claude Pons, Cesar Pons ... 250-252 

Rambaux, Claude Victor Raut, Jean Remy Remy, Jean Mathu- 
rin Remy, Jule& Remy Renaudin, Leopold Renault, 
Nicolas Rombouts, Peeter Roze 252, 253 

Sacquin Salle Salomon, Jean Baptiste Saunier Schnoeck, 
Egidius SILVESTRE, PIERRE ; a true artist, follower of 
Stradivari Silvestre, Hippolyte Silvestre, Hippolyte Chre- 
tien Simon Simonin, Charles Socquet 253, 254 

Theress, Charles Thibout, Jacques Pierre ; an excellent workman, 
and well-known dealer ; his relations with Luigi Tarisio 
Thomassin Tywersus 254 

Vaillant, Francois Veron, Pierre Vibrecht, Gysbert Vuillaume, 
Jean VUILLAUME, J. B. ; a prolific and skilful maker ; asso- 
ciated with Tarisio, and purchaser of his collection 
Vuillaume, N. F. Vuillaume, Claude Francois Vuillaume, 
Sebastien 254, 255 

SECTION IX. THE GERMAN SCHOOL. 

No trace of Violin manufacture in Germany previous to the middle 
of the seventeenth century Pervading influence of Jacob 
Stainer in the constitution of the German School Popularity 
of his model Mediocre character of the school, with some 
notable exceptions ... ... 256-258 

SECTION X. GERMAN MAKERS. 

Albani, Mathias (pere) ALBANI, Mathias (fils) ; his style Italian, 
and workmanship excellent Albani Alletzie, Paolo Art- 
inann 259,260 

Bachmann, Carl Ludwig ; maker to the Court of Frederick the 
Great ; founder of Concerts for Amateurs at Berlin 
Bachmann, O. Bausch, Ludwig C. A. Bausch, Ludwig B. 
Bausch, Otto B. Beckmann Bedler Bindernagel ; made 
in both German and Italian styles Buchstadter ... 260, 261 

Christa, Joseph Paul 261 

DIEL (or Diehl), Martin Diel, Nicolaus Diel, Johann Diel, 
Jacob Diehl, Nicolaus Louis Diehl, Friedrich Diehl, 
Johann Diehl, Heinrich Dopier, Nicolaus Durfel ... 261,262 

Eberle, J. Ulric ; good copyist ; form Italian ; made also Viols 
d' Amour Edlinger, T. Edlinger, Joseph Joachim Elsler, 
Joseph ; made Viols da Gamba Ernst, Franz Anton ; pupil 
of Antonio Lolli ; Court Musician at Gotha 262, 263 

Felden, M. Fichold, Hans Fichtl, Martin Picker, Johann Chris- 
tian Picker, Johann Gotlieb Fischer, Zacharie Frey, 
Hans ; maker of Lutes ; related to Albert Durer Fritzche 263, 264 



CONTENTS xxv 

PAGE 

Gedler, Johann A. Gedler, Johann B. Geissenhof, Franz ; Stradi- 
vari model Gerle, Johann, Lute-maker Griesser, Matthias 
Grimm, Carl Grobitz, A. Gugemmos 264 

Haensel, Johann A. ; his " Ueber den Bau der Violin " Ham- 
berger, Joseph Hamm Hammig Johann Gottfried 
Hassert Hassert Helmer, Carl Hildebrandt Hiltz, Paul 
Hoffmann, Martin Hoffmann, Johann Christian Horen- 
stainer, Joseph Horenstainer, Matthias Horil, Jacob 
Huller, August Humel, Christian Hunger, Christoph 
Friedrich 264, 265 

Jais, Johann Jauch, Johann 265 

Karb Kambl, Johann A. Kembter Kiaposse, Sawes Kirch- 
schlag Kloz, Matthias ; pupil of Stainer KLOZ, SEBASTIAN ; 
superior model, form flat Kloz, George Kloz, Egidius 
Kloz, Joseph Kloz, J. Karl Kohl, Johann Kolditz, Mathias 
Johann Kolditz, J. Knittle, Joseph Knitting Kramer, H. 
Kriner, Joseph 265-267 

Laska, Joseph Lembock 267 

Mann, Hans MAUSSIELL, LEONARD ; Stainer model ; excellent 
workmanship ; style of Tecchler Maher (Maier) Meusidler 
Mohr, Philip Moldonner 267 

Niggel, Simpertus ; good workmanship 267 

Ohberg, Johann Ott, Johann Otto, Jacob August ; maker to the 
Court of Weimar ; author of " Ueber den Bau und die 
Ehrhaltung der Geige und aller Bogeninstrumente " Otto, 
Georg August Otto, Christian Otto, Heinrich Otto, Carl 
Otto, C. U. F. Otto, Ludwig Otto, Louis Otto, Hermann -267, 268 

Parth, Andreas Nicholas Pfretzschner, Gottlob Pfretzschner, 

Carl Friedrich Plack, F.Possen, L 268,269 

Rauch Rauch, Jacob ; Court Violin-maker Rauch, Sebastian 
Rauch Reichel, Johann Gottfried Reichel, Johann Conrad 
Reichers, August Riess Roth, Christian Ruppert ... 269 

Sainprae, Jacques ; Baryton Viol-maker Sawicki Scheinlein, 
Mathias Scheinlein, Johann Michael Schell, Sebastian 
Schlick Schmidt Schonf elder, Johann A. Schonger, Franz 
Schonger, Georg Schorn, Johann ; excellent work ; high 
model Schorn, Johann Paul ; Court instrument-maker 

\Schott, Martin Schweitzer Stadelmann, Daniel ; good 
work ; Stainer model Stadelmann, Johann Joseph STAINER, 
JACOB ; the greatest of German makers, and a thorough 
artist ; his model original ; sketch of his history and work ; 
great popularity of his style ; his " Elector Stainers ; " Herr 
S. Ruf's personal history of Stainer's life, and the romance 
founded thereon ; Counsellor Von Sardagna's contributions 
to his history ; Rabenalt's drama, " Jacob Stainer," and other 
poems thereon : " Der Geigenmacher Jacob Stainer von 
Absam ; " said to have been a pupil of Niccolo Amati ; his 
marriage ; his appointment as Court Violin-maker ; accused 



xxvi CONTENTS 

PACK 

of heresy, and imprisoned ; pecuniary difficulties, and sad 
end ; his good name frequently clouded by inferior work 
falsely attributed to him Stainer, Markus Stainer, Andreas 
Staugtinger, Mathias W. Steininger, Jacob ; related to 
Dopfer and Nicholas Diel Steininger, Franz Stoss Stoss, 
Martin Straube Strauss, Joseph 269-281 

TIEFFENBRUCKER TiELKE, JOACHIM (i.), Lute and Guitar-maker ; 
rich and chaste ornamentation of his work ; description of 
examples extant in England TIELKE, JOACHIM (ii.) ; fine 
examples of a later maker of this name at South Kensington 
and elsewhere 281,282 

VOEL, E. ; excellent work ; Stradivari model Vogel, Wolfgang 

Vogler, Johann Georg Voight, Martin 282,283 

Wagner, Joseph Weickert Weigert Weiss, Jacob Wenger, 
G. F. Widhalm, Leopold ; follower of Stainer ; careful 
finish and good varnish Wyemann, Cornelius 283 

Zwerger, Antoni 283 

SECTION XI. THE ENGLISH SCHOOL. 

Non-recognition of English makers by Continental writers on the 
Violin Causes of the partial decadence of the art in this 
country as on the Continent Earliest English makers, and 
their several models School of English copyists ... 284-292 

SECTION XII. ENGLISH MAKERS. 

Absam, Thomas Adams Addison, William Aireton, Edmund, 

an excellent copyist of Amati Aldred Askey, Samuel ... 293 

Baines Baker Ballantine BANKS, BENJAMIN ; the foremost Eng- 
lish maker, and termed "The English Amati ;" high 
character of his work and varnish Banks, Benjamin (2) 
Banks, James and Henry Barnes, Robert Barrett, John, 
follower of Stainer ; good quality of work Barton, George 
Betts, John, pupil of Richard Duke BETTS, EDWARD, pupil 
of Duke, and an excellent copyist ; high finish ; Amati model 
Bolles Booth, William Booth Boucher Brown, James 
Brown, James (2) Browne, John 293-299 

Cahusac Carter, John Challoner, Thomas Cole, Thomas Cole, 
James Collier, Samuel Collier, Thomas Collingwood, 
Joseph Conway, William Corsby, George Cramond, 
Charles Crask, George Cross, Nathaniel Crowther, John 
Cuthbert ; good quality of work 299, 300 

Davidson, Hay Davis, Richard Davis, William Dearlove, Mark 
Delany, John ; his peculiar label Dennis, Jesse Deve- 
reux, John Dickinson, Edward Dickeson, John ; excellent 
copyist of Amati Ditton DODD, THOMAS ; not a maker, but 
an employer of makers of highest class, and especially 
famous for the high character of his varnish Dodd, Thomas 
(2) Dorant, William DUKE, RICHARD ; his name a " house- 



CONTENTS xxvii 

PAGE 

hold word " with English Violinists ; high character of his 
real work, but frequently and badly counterfeited ; his 
models both Amatese and Stainer Duke, Richard (2) 
Duncan ... ... ... ... 300-305 

Eglington Evans, Richard 35 

FENDT, BERNARD ; a born Fiddle-maker ; a fellow workman with 
John F. Lott ; his instruments copies of Amati, bearing the 
labels of Thomas Dodd or John Betts, and highly valued 
FENDT, BERNARD SIMON ; good work, but sometimes artifi- 
cially "matured;" his Violins, Tenors, Violoncellos, and 
Double-Basses ; follower of the Guarneri and Gasparo da 
Salo models ; his quartett of instruments in the London 
Exhibition of 1851 Fendt, Martin Fendt, Jacob ; his work 
finely finished ; skilful copies of Stradivari, but artificially 
and cleverly " aged " Fendt, Francis Fendt, William 
Ferguson, Donald Firth Forster, W. Forster, William 
(i.), spinning-wheel and Violin-maker FORSTER, WILLIAM 
(ii.), also a maker of spinning-wheels and Violins, and ama- 
teur Fiddler ; an excellent copyist of Stainer and of the 
Amati models ; high character of his work and varnish ; 
his Double-Basses for the Band of George the Third ; his 
instruments highly valued by Robert Lindley FORSTER, 
WILLIAM (iii.) ; excellent work Forster, William (iv.) 
Forster, Simon Andrew Frankland Furber, John Furber, 
Henry John 305-313 

Gibbs, James GILKES, SAMUEL ; a thorough artist, and pupil of 

William Forster Gilkes, William Gough, Walter 313, 314 

Harbour Hardie, Matthew; Scotland's best maker Hardie, 
Thomas Hare, John Hare, Joseph HARRIS, CHARLES ; 
genuine character of work, of Amati and Stradivari type ; 
exquisite finish and good varnish Harris, Charles (2) 
HART, JOHN THOMAS ; pupil of Samuel Gilkes ; specially 
known as connoisseur, collector, and dealer Heesom, 
Edward Hill, Joseph Hill, William Hill, Joseph Hill, 
Lockey Hill, William Ebsworth Holloway, J. Hume, 
Richard 314-318 

Jay, Henry, Viol-maker Jay, Thomas Jay, Henry, maker of Kits 
Johnson, John, music-seller and dealer, referred to by 
Dibdin in his Autobiography ... 318, 320 

Kennedy, Alexander Kennedy, John Kennedy, Thomas 320 

Lentz, Johann Nicolaus Lewis, Edward Longman and Broderip, 
music-sellers and publishers LOTT, JOHN FREDERICK ; a 
finished workman, employed by Thomas Dodd ; splendid 
character of his work ; the " King of English Double-Bass 
makers " Lott, George Frederick Lott, John Frederick ; 
his chequered career, and Charles Read's novel thereon 320-322 

Macintosh Marshall, John Martin Mayson, W. Meares, 

Richard Mier Morrison, John 323 



xxviii CONTENTS 

PAGE 

Naylor, Isaac Norborn, John NORMAN, BARAK ; probably a pupil 
of Urquhart ; follower of Maggini ; excellent quality of his 
Violoncellos and Tenors ; his partnership with Nathaniel 
Cross Norris, John ... ... ... 323-325 

Pamphilon, Edward Panormo, Vincent Panormo, Joseph ; ex- 
cellent character of work Panormo, George Lewis 
Panormo, Louis Parker, Daniel Pearce, James Pember- 
ton, Edward Perry and Wilkinson Powell Preston, 
John 325-327 

Rawlins, Henry Rayman, Jacob ; founder of Violin-making in 
England Richards, Edwin Rook, Joseph Rosse (or Ross), 
John Ross, John (2) ; good character of work and varnish 327, 328 

Shaw Simpson Smith, Henry Smith, Thomas Smith, Wil- 
liam 328 

Tarr, W. Taylor Thompson Thorowgood, Henry Tilley, 

Thomas Tobin, Richard Tobin 328, 329 

Urquhart ; excellent character of his work 329 

Valentine, William 329 

Wamsley, Peter ; superior character of his work Wise, Chris- 
topher Withers, Edward Withers, Edward (2) ... 329, 330 

Young, father and son, and PurcelPs Catch ... 330 

SECTION XIII. THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES. 

Sterne on Hobby-horses Tender relationships between the Violin 
and its Votaries Wendell Holmes on the Violin Thomas 
Mace on early prices of instruments Early makers, con- 
tinental and English Advent of the Stainer model, and its 
temporary preference over those of the Italian masters ; its 
depressing influence on prices of Amatis and Stradivaris 
Guarneri del Gesu brought to the front by Paganini, and 
Maggini by De Beriot Recognition of the merits of Ber- 
gonzi, Guadagnini, and Montagnana Luigi Tarisio, and his 
pilgrimages in search of hidden treasures ; his progress as 
amateur, connoisseur, devotee ; his singular enthusiasm, and 
Charles Reade's anecdote thereon ; the Spanish Bass in the 
Bay of Biscay ; Tarisio's visit to England, and the Coding 
collection ; his hermit life ; purchase of his collection by 
M. Vuillaume Principal buyers of Italian instruments at 
this period, continental and English Charles Reade as a 
connoisseur Count Cozio di Salabue, an ardent votary of 
the Cremonese Violin ; his purchase of Stradivari's instru- 
ments, patterns, tools, &c. ; his correspondence with Paolo 
Stradivari relating thereto William Corbett, and his 
" Gallery of Cremonys and Stainers '" The collections of 
Andrew Fountaine and James Coding The Gillott Collec- 
tion ; its curious origin, its unique character and interesting 
circumstances attending its sale 331-374 



CONTENTS xxix 

PAGE 

SECTION XIV. SKETCH OF THE PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN. 

Date of the first appearance of the instrument The Violin of 
Leonardo da Vinci Paolo Veronese's picture, " The 
Marriage at Cana" (with engraving) Baltazarini, the 
earliest known player The " Concert Orchestra " and the 
Duke of Ferrara First use of stringed instruments in the 
Opera ; the " Orfeo " of Claudio Monteverde Introduction 
of the Sonata ; Dr. Burney thereon Corelli, and the 
" Balletti da Camera " Dibden on Corelli's Concertos Jean 
Baptiste Lulli, and the Legend of the Stewpans ; his in- 
fluence on early French Violin music Progress of the 
Violin in England ; Dr. Rogers and John Jenkins Samuel 
Pepys on the emoluments of the Royal Band John Bannister 
and the earliest English public concerts Henry Purcell ; his 
Sonatas, and his royal patron, Charles II. Thomas Britton, 
the "musical small-coal man," and his concerts in Clerken- 
well John Henry and Thomas Eccles, and itinerant musi- 
cians Francesco Geminiani ; his Sonatas and musical 
works Progress of the instrument in Italy ; Tartini and 
his compositions ; Locatelli, Lolli, and Giardini ; Boccherini 
and his Quintets ; Viotti, his School of Violin-playing, and 
his concerts ; Campagnoli, and his " Studies on the Seven 
Positions of the Violin," and other works ; Paganini, and 
his imitators ; Sivori, Ole Bull, Leclair, Gavines, and other 
leaders in the art Violin-playing in France and Belgium ; 
M. Rode, M. Alard, M. Sainton, De Beriot and Vieuxtemps 
Polish Violinists of note Lord Chesterfield's instructions 
to his son relative to Fiddling Michael Festing and Thomas 
Britton ; origin of " The Philharmonic Society," and of the 
" Royal Society of Musicians " Handel legacy to the Royal 
Society Early musical proclivities of the Earl of Morning- 
ton Salomon and the Philharmonic ; negociations with 
Haydn Influence of Salomon on the development of musical 
taste in England The Cramers Nicholas Mori and others 
Dando Henry Blagrove, and his " Concerti da Camera " 
Mr. Chappell and his " Monday Popular Concerts " 
Henry C. Cooper, and the " Quartett Association " M. 
Sainton, Hill, Piatti ; John Carrodus, Herr Molique, and the 
Brothers Holmes Progress of the Violin in Germany : 
Graun and Benda ; John Sebastian Bach as Violinist and 
composer ; Herr Joachim Handel, influence of his composi- 
tions on the progress of the Violin Haydn, and his Sym- 
phonies and Quartetts ; A lady's ideal thereof Mozart, and 
his " Method " for the Violin ; his early attachment to the 
instrument Schubert, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Fesca, and 
their influence Louis Spohr and his works Bernard 
Molique Joseph Mayseder Kalliwoda Herr Ernst, Joa- 
chim and Strauss, with Herr Wilhelmj, and their concerts 375-409 



xxx CONTENTS 

SECTION XV. ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA CONNECTED WITH 
THE VIOLIN. 

PAGE 

Hudibras and the Champion Crowdero George Herbert's refer- 
ences to Music Christopher Simpson's Trinity in Unity 
Shakespeare's Sonnet VIII. Violins from a medical point 
of view " A Musician " Origin of Tartini's " Sonato del 
Diavolo " Dr. Johnson and the Violin Dr. Johnson on the 
Difficulty of Playing the Violin Dr. Johnson's Epitaph on 
Phillips, the Welsh Violinist Dr. Johnson's Knowledge of 
Music Dr. Johnson on Fiddling and Freewill Haydn in 
London : a " Sweet Stradivari ; '' Letters of the Rev. Thomas 
Twining Gainsborough as a musician Garrick and Cer- 
vetto The King and the Player Sir Walter Scott on Music 
and Fiddles ; the Duke of Hamilton's passion for the Violin 
A Cinderella Violoncello A Stolen " Strad "The Missing 
Scroll Another Wandering Scroll A Montagnana Instru- 
ment shot through the body Fiddle Marks and the Credu- 
lous Dabblers " Guarneri " at a Discount Dragonetti's 
Gasparo : Letter thereon by Mr. Samuel Appleby The 
Betts Stradivari : Letter by the late Charles Reade Leigh 
Hunt on Paganini Thackeray on Orchestral Music Spohr 
and his Guarneri Spohr and the Collector The Ettrick 
Shepherd and the Violin The Fiddle Trade : " Old Borax " 
and " Michael Schnapps," the Fiddle-ogre The Prince and 
the " Fugal Vortex " Sale of Cremonese Instruments at 
Milan in 1790 An Indefatigable Violinist A Wish Living 
Stradivaris Pleasures of Imagination A Royal Amateur 
Pius IX. and the Musician Ole Bull and Fiddle Varnish 
Letter from Tartini on the Treatment of the Violin ... 410-507 

INDEX 509 






LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS 



FRONTISPIECE Paganini's "Giuseppe Guarneri." 1743. 

PLATE FACING PAGE 

I. Stradivari Viola. 1672 ..-. ... 16 

f Jacobus Stainer. 1669 

II. J Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu 

V Niccolo Amati. Grand Pattern. 1641... 

III. Violoncello by Antonio Stradivari ... ... 50 

/'Antonio Stradivari. 1734. ' 

IV. J The Gillott " Strad." 1715 66 

(Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu. 1734' .... 

V. Carlo Bergonzi Violoncello. Grand Pattern ... 84 

VI. f J- B- Guadagnini ...j ^ 

IStorioni. 1797 / 



VII. Specimens of Scrolls ... 120 



(Giuseppe Guarneri. 1742 
VIII. -j Antonio Stradivari. 1711 



136 



(Antonio Stradivari. 1703 
IX.' Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu. 1737 ... ... 154 

X. Domenico Montagnana Violoncello ... ... 170 

(Antonio Stradivari. Tenor. 1690 ...\ 
XI. ] I ... loo 

I Antonio Stradivari. 1734 J 



xxxii LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS 

PLATE , FACING PAGE 

I' Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu. 1738 
XII. j The " Dolphin " Strad. 1714 ...... } ... 200 

(Antonio Stradivari. 1718 

/"Antonio Stradivari. 1702 

XIII. ] Antonio Stradivari. 1722 ...... } ... 232 

(Antonio Stradivari. 1703 

XIV. Stradivari Violoncello ......... ... 250 

XV. Chapel of the Rosary, Cremona ...... ... 266 

/Antonio Stradivari. 1708 ...... \ 

XVI. j Antonio Stradivari. 1736 ...... L ... 282 

(.Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu. 1735 ... j 

XVII. The "Betts" Stradivari. 1704 ......... 298 

f Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu ...... | 

I Antonio Stradivari (Inlaid). 1687 ...J 

Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu. 1733 
XIX. - Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu. 1741 ... ... 332 



.Antonio Stradivari. 1726 

1 348 

...j 

XXI. Antonio Stradivari. 1690 ......... 380 



XX. 

( Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu. 1735 



" Marriage at Cana," by Paolo Veronese ... 376 
Tartini's Dream ... 428 



THE VIOLIN 

ITS FAMOUS MAKERS AND THEIR 
IMITATORS 

SECTION I 
The Early History of the Violin 



THE early history of the Violin is involved in 
obscurity, and in consequence, much diversity 
of opinion exists with regard to it. The chief 
object of the writer of these pages is to throw 
light upon the instrument in its perfected state. 
It is, therefore, unnecessary to enter at great 
length upon the vexed question of its origin. The 
increased research attendant upon the development 
of musical history generally could hardly fail to 
discover facts of more or less importance relative 
to the origin of instruments played with a bow ; 
but although our knowledge in this direction is 
both deeper and wider, the light shed upon the 
subject has not served to dissipate the darkness 



2 THE VIOLIN 

attending it. Certain parts have been illumined, 
and conclusions of more or less worth have been 
drawn therefrom ; for the rest, all remains more 
hopelessly obscured and doubtful than the identity 
of the "Man in the Iron Mask" or the writer of 
the " Letters of Junius." 

It is satisfactory to know that the most valuable 
and interesting part of our subject is comparatively 
free from that doubt and tradition which necessarily 
attaches to the portion belonging to the Dark or 
Middle Ages. When we reflect that Music as 
we understand it is a modern art, and that all 
instruments of the Viol and Fiddle type, as far 
as the end of the fifteenth century, were rude if 
not barbarous, it can scarcely excite surprise that 
our interest should with difficulty be awakened in 
subtle questions pertaining to the archaeology of 
bowed instruments. 

The views taken of the early history of the 
leading instrument have not been more multiform 
than remote. The Violin has been made to figure 
in history sacred and profane, and in lore classic 
and barbaric. That an instrument which is at 
once the most perfect and the most difficult, and 
withal the most beautiful and the most strangely 
interesting, should have been thus glorified, hardly 
admits of wonder. Enthusiasm is a noble passion, 
when tempered with reason. It cannot be said, 
however, that the necessity of this qualification 
has been invariably recognised by enthusiastic 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 3 

inquirers into the history of instruments played 
with a bow. We have a curious instance of its 
non-recognition in a treatise on the Viol, 1 written 
by a distinguished old French Violist named Jean 
Rousseau. The author, bent upon going to the 
root of his subject, begins with the Creation, and 
speaks of Adam as a Violist. Perhaps Rousseau 
based his belief in the existence of Fiddling at 
this early period of the world's history on the 
words "and his brother's name was Jubal ; from 
him descended the Flute players and Fiddlers," 
as rendered by Luther. 

The parts Orpheus and Apollo have been made 
to play in infantile Fiddle history have necessarily 
been dependent upon the licence and the imagin- 
ation of the sculptor and the medallist. Inferences 
of antiquity, however, have been drawn from such 
representations. Tracings of a bow among the 
sculpture of the ancients have been sought for 
in vain : no piece is known upon which a bow is 
distinguishable. A century since, an important 
discovery was thought to have been made by 
musical antiquarians in the Grand Duke's Tribuna 
at Florence, wherein was a small figure of Apollo 
playing on a kind of Violin with something of 
the nature of a bow. Inquiry, however, made 
it clear that the figure belonged to modern art. 
Orpheus has been represented holding a Violin 
in one hand and a bow in the other ; inquiry again 
1 "Traite de la Viole," Paris, 1687. 



4 THE VIOLIN 

showed that the Violin and the bow were added 
by the restorer of the statue. 

The views held by musical historians regarding 
the origin of the Violin may be described by the 
terms Asiatic and Scandinavian. The Eastern 
view, it need scarcely be said, is the most pro- 
longed, exceeding some five thousand years along 
the vista of time, where little else is discoverable 
but what is visionary, mythical, and unsubstantial. 
It is related traditionally of course that some 
three thousand years before our era there lived 
a King of Ceylon named Ravanon, 1 who invented 
a four-stringed instrument played with a bow, 
and which was named after the inventor " the 
Ravanastron." If it were possible to identify 
the instrument of that name, now known to the 
Hindoos, as identical with that of King Ravanon 
as M. Sonnerat declares it to be the Eastern 
view of our subject would be singularly clear and 
defined. A declaration, however, resting on 
tradition, necessarily makes the gathering of 
evidence in support of it a task both dubious 
and difficult. 2 

1 M. Sonnerat, " Voyage aux Indes Orientales," 1806. 

2 In Mr. Engel's a Researches into the Early History of 
the Violin Family," 1883 a book containing much valuable 
evidence on the subject the author rightly remarks : " Now, 
this may be true ; still it is likewise true that most of the 
Asiatic nations are gifted with a remarkably powerful imagin- 
ation, which evidently induces them sometimes to assign 
a fabulously high age to any antiquity fif theirs the origin 






THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 5 

It is said that Sanscrit scholars have met with 
names for the bow in Sanscrit writings dating back 
nearly two thousand years. If this information 
could be supplemented by reliable monumental 
evidence of the existence of a bow of some rude 
kind among the nations of the East about the 
commencement of the Christian era, its value 
would necessarily be complete. In the absence 
of such evidence we are left in doubt as to what 
was intended to be understood by the reported 
references to a bow in ancient Sanscrit literature. 
The difficulty of understanding what Greek and 
Roman authors meant, in reference to the same 
subject, must be greatly intensified in the works 
of ancient Eastern writers. 1 

The inquiry is simplified from the point of view 
of a Violinist if we reject all bow-progenitors but 

of which dates back to a period where history merges in 
myth. At the present day the Hindoos possess, among their 
numerous rude instruments of the Fiddle class, an extra- 
ordinarily primitive contrivance, which they believe to be 
the instrument invented by Ravanon. Their opinion has 
actually been adopted by some of our modern musical 
historians as if it were a well established truth." 

1 In the "Reflections" at the end of Vol. I., " Burney's 
History of Music," we read, " The ancients had instead of 
a bow, the Plectrum." " It appears too clumsy to produce 
from the strings tones that had either the sweetness or 
brilliancy of such as are drawn from them by means of 
the bow or quill. But, notwithstanding it is represented 
so massive, I should rather suppose it to have been a quill, 
or piece of ivory in imitation of one, than a stick or blunt 
piece of wood or ivory." 



6 THE VIOLIN 

those which have been strung with fibre, silk, 
hair, or other material, the properties of which 
would permit of the production of sustained sounds. 
Implements less developed belong to a separate 
order of sound-producing contrivances, namely 
plectra, and may be described as permitting strum- 
ming by striking in place of twanging or twitching 
the strings. The imperfect knowledge we have 
of instruments of the Fiddle kind in Europe, 
belonging to a period many centuries later than 
that we are now considering, points to their having 
been struck or strummed, and not bowed with a 
view to the sounds being sustained. 

The oldest known representation of a contrivance 
or instrument upon which a string is stretched 
with a peg to adjust its tension, is probably that 
described by Dr. Burney as having been seen 
by him at Rome on an Egyptian obelisk. In a 
notice of Claudius Ptolemeus, an Egyptian, who 
wrote upon harmonic sounds about the middle 
of the second century, we have an illustration of 
an instrument of a similar character to that found 
on the obelisk above noticed. 1 In all probability 
neither of these contrivances was intended to 
be used as a musical instrument further than for 
scientific purposes, as a means of testing the tension 
of strings and the division of the scale : in short, 
they were monochords and dichords. 

In following the Eastern branch of our subject, 
1 Sir John Hawkins' History. 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 7 

it is necessary to refer to the suggested Arabian 
origin of the Ribeca of the Italians and the Rebec 
of the French a little bowed instrument, shaped 
like the half of a pear, and having therefore some- 
thing of the character of the mandoline. We have 
early mention of this particular view of Violin 
history among the valuable and interesting manu- 
script notes of Sir John Hawkins. 1 The author 
states that the Rebab was taken to Spain by the 
Moors, " from whence it passed to Italy, and 
obtained the appellation of Ribeca." He also 
refers to a work entitled " Shaw's Travels," in 
which mention is made of the Rebeb or Rebab 
as an instrument common in the East in the eigh- 
teenth century. It is, however, upon turning to 
the dissertation on the invention and improvement 
of stringed instruments by John Gunn, published in 
1793, that we first find a lucid account of Eastern 
influence in connection with bowed instruments. 2 
The author refers to the monochord as the in- 
vention of the Arabians : he then says, " The early 

1 Hawkins' " History of Music " was published in the year 
1776. The MS. notes, which are attached to the author's 
copy in the British Museum, were included in the edition 
published in 1853 by Novello & Co. 

2 It may be remarked that nineteen years prior to the 
publication of John Gunn's dissertation was published the 
valuable work of Martinus Gerbertus, " De Cantu et Musica 
Sacra, 1 ' dated 1774. The volumes of Gerbertus were evi- 
dently perused with care and attention by Gunn. The 
references of John Gunn to the work are the earliest I have 
met with. 



8 THE VIOLIN 

acquaintance which it is probable the Egyptians 
had of the science and practice of music, was 
the source whence the Arabians might derive their 
knowledge. There is a remarkable correspondence 
between the dichord of the Egyptians and an instru- 
ment of the like number of strings of the Arabians. 
This instrument was played with a bow, and was 
probably introduced into Europe by the Arabians 
of Spain, and well known from the Middle Ages 
down to the last century by the name of the Rebec ; 
it had probably, on its first introduction, only two 
strings, as it still has among the Moors, and soon 
after had the number increased to three. Dr. 
Shaw, who had seen it, calls it a Violin with three 
strings, which is played on with a bow, and called 
by the Moors Rebebb." In passing it may be 
said that the translators of the Bible, historians, 
painters, and poets have in many instances con- 
tributed greatly to the confusion attending the 
history of bowed instruments from their inability 
to correctly name and depict corded instruments. 
About a century after the publication of Dr. Shaw's 
" Travels in the East," appeared Lane's " Modern 
Egypt," wherein reference is made to an instrument 
named Rebab. It is described as being made 
partly of parchment, and mounted with one or 
two strings, played on with a bow. These instru- 
ments appear to be identical. We do not usually 
look to the East for progressiveness, and would 
therefore not expect to discover much difference 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 9 

between a Rebab of the nineteenth century and 
one of the eighth century. In taking this view 
we may therefore assume that the existing Rebab 
has nearly all in common with its Eastern name- 
sake of the eighth century. The rude and gross 
character of the instrument is remarkable, and 
renders any connection between it and the Rebec 
of Europe in the Middle Ages somewhat difficult 
to realise. Having no certain knowledge of the 
form of the ancient Rebab, our views regarding 
its connection with the Rebec must necessarily 
be speculative, and mainly dependent upon the 
etymological thread which is drawn between the 
words Rebec and Rebab. It is worthy of notice 
in relation to the opinion held by Sir John Hawkins 
and many other musical historians as to a bowed 
instrument of the Fiddle kind having been intro- 
duced into Spain from the East in the eighth 
century, that we possess no certain evidence of 
bowed instrument cultivation in Spain between the 
eighth and twelfth centuries, whilst we have proof 
of the use of bowed instruments both in Germany 
and in England within that period. 1 The evidence 
we have of the use of a description of Viol at that 
time, from the carvings on the Portico della Gloria 

1 Mention is made by Ash-Shakandi, who wrote on Moorish 
music in Spain in the thirteenth century, of the Rebab. If 
this instrument was not more developed than its modern 
namesake, we have evidence of the Saxons being in possession 
of bowed instruments infinitely superior at a much earlier 
date. 



io THE VIOLIN 

of the Church of Santiago da Compostella, does not 
carry conviction that a bow was used, since none 
is represented. 1 

That the Spanish were influenced by their 
Moorish conquerors with regard to music, min-' 
strelsy, and dancing is certain. The origin of 
such movements as the Saraband, the Morisca 
(or Morris dance), and the Chaconne, 2 has been 
traced to the East. That such dances should have 
been accompanied by instruments of Eastern origin 
of the Lute kind may be assumed. Both in Spain 
and southern France accompanying instruments 
struck with plectra or twanged with the fingers 
were adopted at a very early period, and the people 
of those parts attained to a high state of proficiency 
so much so indeed as to have rendered the 
cultivation of this description of music a national 
characteristic with them in the use of such instru- 
ments. The usage of the bow, however, does not 
appear to have been cultivated sufficiently, if at all, 
to leave its traces in history, until about the twelfth 
century, when the Troubadours sought the aid of 
the Trouveres and Jongleurs. The Trouveres 
were minstrel poets belonging to Northern France. 

1 In " The Violin and its Music," 1881, page 50, I have 
assumed their use by the performers on the above mentioned 
arch, believing it not improbable that the use of the bow was 
introduced by the settlers in Spain from the North. 

2 It need scarcely be said that the Eastern and Spanish 
ancestor of Bach's Chaconne was terpsichorean, and was 
unconnected with any kind of scientific musical treatment. 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN n 

The Jongleurs entertained their patrons with jests 
and arch sayings, and were often joined by the 
Gigeours of Germany, to accompany their lays with 
their Geigen and kindred instruments. 

The foregoing remarks point to the absence of 
reliable evidence of the existence of a bow worthy 
of the name from the point of view of a Violinist 
among the Asiatic nations in the early centuries of 
our era. The Ravanastron of India, the Rebab of 
Arabia, and other stringed instruments used by the 
Persians and the Chinese, hardly admit of being 
looked upon as links in the genealogical Fiddle 
chain. Whatever the shape and use of ancient 
Eastern instruments having something in common 
with the European Violin may have been, the 
slight apparent affinity is accidental, and no real 
relationship exists between the European and the 
Asiatic Fiddle. 1 

1 Mr. Engel, " Researches into the Early History of the 
Violin Family," page 104, remarks : u It is rarely that the 
name of an Asiatic musical instrument can be traced to a 
European origin. There are, however, one or two instances 
in which this seems to be possible. Thus, the Chinese name 
Ye-Yia, by which they occasionally designate their Fiddle, 
may possibly be a corruption of giga or geige, considering that 
the common name of the Chinese Fiddle is Unheen, and that 
Macao, where this instrument is said to be called Ye- Yin, has 
been above three hundred years in the possession of the 
Portuguese, and in constant communication with European 
nations." This seems to deprive the argument of the 
Eastern origin of the Fiddle of weight, and favours the 
already strong evidence of Scandinavian origin centred in 
the word Geige. 



12 THE VIOLIN 

II. 

The survey of the early history of bowed instru- 
ments in the North of Europe necessarily discovers 
a broader field of ostensible data than is possible to 
be found in the Asiatic view of the subject. 
Tradition, accompanied by its attendant uncer- 
tainties, gives place to facts recorded in illuminated 
manuscripts of the Middle Ages, on sculptured 
stone, on engraved brasses, in the lay of the 
minstrel, in the song of the poet, and, finally, in the 
works of the painter and of the musician. The 
information obtainable from these several sources is 
often of the slightest kind, and admits of little else 
than a rude historical outline being drawn. The 
varied character of the evidence, however, serves in 
some instances to counterbalance the lack of detail. 
Enquiry into the history of any science seldom 
fails to make us acquainted with men whose views 
and opinions were formulated prior to the produc- 
tion of well-digested evidence in favour of their 
premises a condition of things resulting oftentimes 
in their judgments being post-dated, and their 
names in consequence severed from them ; in 
short 

" Elder times have worn the same, 
Though new ones get the name." 

In relation to our subject, the Hon. Roger North, 
Attorney-General to King James the Second, 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 13 

occupies a position of the kind described. In his 
work entitled " Memoirs of Music," written in the 
early part of the eighteenth century, we have the 
ingenious author's views as to the source from 
whence sprung the progenitor of the long line of 
Fiddle and Viol. His treatment of the subject 
displays a truly commendable amount of skill and 
judgment, and more so when we consider the limited 
sources of information at his disposal in comparison 
with those at the service of subsequent musical 
authors. He says, " There is no hint where the 
Viol kind came first in use." " But as to the inven- 
tion which is so perfectly novel as not to have been 
heard of before Augustulus, the last of the Roman 
Emperors, I cannot but esteem it perfectly Gothic." 
" I suppose that at first it was like its native 
country, rude and gross, and at the early impor- 
tation it was of the lesser kind which they called 
Viola da Bracchia, and since the Violin." He con- 
cludes by expressing his belief that the Hebrews 
did not sound their "lutes and guitars with the 
scratch of an horse-tail bow." These opinions of 
Roger North are for the most part identical with 
those held by well-known promoters of the 
Northern view of our subject. 1 

1 Paul Lacroix remarks, in " The Arts of the Middle 
Ages " : " Stringed instruments that were played on by means 
of bows were not known before the fifth century, and 
belonged to the Northern races." Sir Gore Ouseley, in his 
English edition of Naumann's " History of Music," com- 
menting upon the author's statement that " the Rebab was 



i 4 THE VIOLIN 

About fifty years later than the date of North's 
" Memoirs of Music " appeared the famous work of 
Martinus Gerbertus, entitled, " De Cantu et Musica 
Sacra." Among the valuable manuscripts referred 
to by the author is one which supplies the earliest 
known representation of a bow instrument of the 
Fiddle kind, and which may be accepted as a de- 
scription of German Fiddle. The date of this 
particular manuscript has been ascribed by M. 
Fe"tis to the ninth century. It may possibly have 
belonged to an earlier period. 1 

introduced by Arabs into Southern Europe, and may be the 
precursor of all our modern stringed instruments," says, 
" From this view I am compelled to dissent," and speaks in 
favour of the Northern origin. William Chappell, " Popular 
Music of the Olden Times," remarks : " I will not follow M. 
Fetis in his newly adopted Eastern theory of the bow. The 
only evidence he adduces is its present use in the East, 
and the primitive form of Eastern instruments." " I would 
ask how comes it that the bow was unknown to the Greeks 
and the Romans ? Did not Alexander the Great conquer 
India and Persia ? And were not those countries better 
known to the ancients than to the modern until within the 
last three hundred years ? The Spaniards derived their 
instruments from the Moors, but the bow was not among 
them." 

1 As the manuscript was destroyed by the fire which burnt 
nearly the whole of the buildings", Abbey, Church, and 
Library of St. Blasius in the Black Forest in 1768, the 
language of Gerbertus, who examined the original manuscript, 
is worthy of some attention. After referring to certain plates, 
copied from a manuscript of the year 600, he says that " the 
other twenty-three representations on the following eighth 
plate " (in which is included the early German Fiddle) " are 
from a manuscript a little more recent" Whether the period 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 15 

The instrument was described in the manuscript 
of St. Blasius as a Lyre. Gerbertus rightly 
observes that it has only one string, and is more 
like a Cheli. 1 He quotes writers of different epochs 

of three centuries named by M. Fetis can be considered 
recent is at least questionable. The information taken from 
this manuscript is of paramount importance, with reference 
to the Asiatic and Northern views of the origin of the Violin. 
The view taken by some authorities, that the Europeans 
received their earliest instructions in infantile Fiddling from 
the Moors, when they conquered Spain in the eighth century, 
is already overclouded by the representation of a Fiddle 
and bow on this German Manuscript, even assuming it to be 
of the ninth century ; but if its date be given prior to the 
appearance of the Moors in Europe, the Eastern view of the 
subject is naturally further darkened. 

1 The ancient name of corded instruments of the Lute, 
Mandoline, and Guitar kinds. Tradition has it that the Nile, 
having overflowed Egypt, left on shore a dead Cheli (tortoise), 
the flesh of which being dried in the sun, nothing was left 
within the shell but nerves and cartilages, and these being 
braced and contracted were rendered sonorous. Mercury, 
in walking, struck his foot against the shell of the tortoise, 
and was delighted with the sound produced, which gave him 
the idea of a Lyre that he later constructed in the form of 
a tortoise, and strung with the dried sinews of dead animals. 
This account of the origin of Lutes, Fiddles, and catgut is 
classic and picturesque. Tradition and myth have played 
parts of much consequence in the work of civilisation : they 
have, however, at length fallen upon a critical and re- 
markably sceptical age, and rapidly fade and die under the 
inquisitorial torture of modern inquiry a result at least to be 
expected from the contact of their own dreamy and delicate 
nature with unromantic matter. It is perhaps safer to refer 
the origin of the name Cheli or tortoise, as applied to corded 
instruments, to the fact of their having sound chambers, con- 
structed with tortoise-shell, as was the case with the Greek 



16 THE VIOLIN 

relative to the meaning of the word Lyre as used 
by them, the tendency of his remarks apparently 
being to establish a connection between the German 
Fiddle named a Lyre in the manuscript and the 
Rebec. The representation we have of the instru- 
ment certainly conveys the idea of its having been 
a progenitor of the Rebec of the French, the Ribeca 
of the Italians, and the Fithele and the Geige of 
the Germans. The mention of an instrument of 
the kind in a German manuscript, discovered in an 
ancient German monastery, together with the record 
being dated by Gerbertus as not far removed from 
the sixth century, lends much weight to the opinion 
of Roger North with regard to the part played by 
the Teutonic race in the early history of bowed 
instruments. 

It is now necessary to refer to the well-known 
representation of a Saxon Fiddle contained in the 
Cottonian manuscripts in the British Museum. 
Strutt, in his " Sports and Pastimes," supplies us 
with a copy of the illustration, which is that of 
a juggler throwing balls and knives to the accom- 
paniment of an instrument of the Fiddle kind. 
Strutt ascribes the manuscript to the tenth century. 

Lyre, or to the circumstance of the bodies of the instruments 
being shaped like the tortoise. The Germans used the word 
Chelys to designate their Viols ; and Christopher Simpson, 
in his famous treatise on the "Viol da Gamba," names it 
Chelys. The application of the word Chelys to bowed 
instruments is suggestive of their remote connection with the 
ancient Lyre. 




ANTONIO STRADIVARI VIOLA. 
1672. 



Plate i. 



[To face p. 16. 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 17 

The form of this Fiddle is in advance of that 
supplied in the St. Blasius manuscript, there being 
four strings, but there is no bridge indicated, and, 
had there been, it would not have evidenced a 
Saxon knowledge of tuning the strings to given 
intervals, and playing upon each string. The little 
light which has been thrown on the condition of 
instrumental music at the time renders it doubtful 
whether any bowed instrument was used, other than 
for the purpose of rendering a rude extemporaneous 
accompaniment to the voice or the dance. 

The chief authorities upon ancient minstrelsy 
agree that the Saxon's love of music was cul- 
tivated for centuries with ardour by his Saxon 
ancestors ; it would therefore be reasonable to 
believe that his knowledge of rude Fiddles was 
derived from the land of his forefathers, and not 
from any instrument he discovered in Britain. 1 
The similarity of the instrument of the St. Blasius 
manuscript and of that in the hands of the Saxon 
Gleeman in the Cottonian manuscript is evidence 
of Teutonic origin. It is, moreover, strengthened 
by the fact of the use of the word Fithele by the 
Anglo-Saxons for nearly two centuries after the 
Norman Conquest, which name was adopted with 
but little variation by the whole of the Teutonic 

1 In Carl Engel's " Researches into the Early History of 
the Violin Family," 1883, the author disbelieves in the Crwth 
having been the lineal ancestor of the Violin, and there can 
be but little doubt of the correctness of his opinion. 

C 



i8 THE VIOLIN 

race. 1 In Germany the word was used as late 
as the twelfth century. About this period the word 
Geige appears to have been applied in Germany 
to designate a Fiddle. It is described as an im- 
proved Rebec, and strung with three strings. 2 The 
use of the word Geige in Germany instead of 
Fithele in the twelfth century, is worthy of attention 
as bearing upon Teutonic origin. The earliest in- 
formation we have of the use of the Geige in 
France is in connection with the Jongleurs. The 
Geige was popular in France until the fifteenth 
century, when, as M. Lacroix says, it disappeared, 
leaving its name "as the designation of a joyous 
dance, which for a considerable period was en- 
livened by the sound of the instrument." The 
word Geige, I am inclined to think, is important 
as furnishing evidence of historical value in relation 
to the ancestry of the Violin. Lacroix believes 
that Germany created the Geige ; other authorities 
are of opinion that it originated among the people 
of Provence. The former view is supported by the 

1 It is worthy of remark that the Northmen, who invaded 
and gave their name to Normandy, carried from their 
Scandinavian homes a love of minstrelsy. 

2 Sebastian Wirdung, a priest, published a work in 1511, 
in which he describes the bow instruments of his time by the 
names Gross-Geigen and Klein-Geigen. The illustration of 
the Klein-Geige differs but little from the Rebec ; it has three 
strings, whilst the Gross-Geige has nine. Further informa- 
tion is supplied by the work of Martin Agricola, published 
in 1529. Mendel's German Musical Didionaiy, article 
11 Violine." 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 19 

strongest evidence. Some inquirers derive the 
word Geige from the French and Italian words for 
leg of mutton. 1 Wigand, however, supposes it to 
be derived from the old northern word Geiga, mean- 
ing trembling, or from Gigel, to quiver. If we 
consider the nature and character of the instrument, 
this view of the derivation of the word appears 
both ingenious and correct. Roger North shrewdly 
conjectured that the " rude and gross " Gothic 
Fiddle " used to stir up the vulgar to dancing, or 
perhaps to solemnise their idolatrous sacrifices." 
In the Dark Ages dancing may have been regarded 
as bi-pedal trembling. I have remarked in another 
place, 2 "In the early ages of mankind dancing or 
jigging must have been done to the sound of the 
voice, next to that of the pipe, and, when the bow 
was discovered, to that of a stringed instrument 
which was named the Geige from its primary 
association with dancing." The evidence we have 

1 " Almost all our musical writers state, as if it were a well- 
ascertained fact, that the German word Geige is derived 
from the Gigue of the French Minstrels, who, during the 
i3th and I4th centuries, had a sort of Rebec which they 
called by that name, and which, according to some commen- 
tators, resembled in outward appearance the shank of 
a goat or ram, called Gigot, and hence the origin of all the 
similar words occurring in different European languages. 
These commentators have, however, neglected to prove that 
the old French word Gigue occurs before the i3th century, 
or that it is earlier than the Middle High German Gige." 
Engel's " Researches into the History of the Violin Family." 

2 "The Violin and its Music/' 1881, page 19, 



20 THE VIOLIN 

of the use to which the leading instrument was 
put in the days of its adolescence is indicative of its 
having grown up among dancers, jugglers, and 
buffoons. In Germany its players gave fame and 
name to a distinct class of itinerant minstrels named 
the Gigeours, who were often associated with the 
Jongleurs in their perambulations. In France, 
from the days of the Jongleurs to those of Henry 
IV., and later to those of Louis XIV., the instru- 
ment was wedded to the dance. In England to the 
time of Charles II. it was in the hands of the 
Fiddler, who accompanied the jig, the hornpipe, 
the round, and the North Country frisk. 

In pursuing the course of our subject, our in- 
quiries have hitherto been mainly concerned with 
the leading instrument in a barbarous and semi- 
barbarous state. We now reach what may be 
termed the transition stage of the question. The 
information relative to the appearance of the Geige, 
or Violin tuned in fifths, is of the slenderest kind. 
To obtain evidence of much worth it is necessary 
to reflect upon the condition of instrumental music 
about the sixteenth century, together with the form 
and character of bowed instruments belonging to 
the same period. The manners and customs of 
peoples have also to be considered. We have 
hitherto found the Geige or Fiddle among minstrels 
and itinerant musicians in countries where music 
and minstrelsy had become an institution with the 
people. The instrument was rude and gross, and its 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 21 

office was to play extemporaneous accompaniments, 
with considerable licence. At length domestic 
music began to be zealously cultivated in Germany 
and the Low Countries, to which important circum- 
stance the rapid development of stringed instru- 
ments is traceable. Viols of various kinds 
supported the voices, and an important manu- 
facture of such instruments took root in Nuremberg 
and other German cities. In following the history 
of the Madrigal much light is thrown upon that of 
the Viol, to which it is necessary to give attention 
in order to follow in some degree the development 
of the Violin. 

The co'ndition of music in Italy previous to the 
time when the father of the Madrigal, Adrian 
Willaert, followed in the steps of his countrymen 
and made Italy his home, presents a great contrast 
to the state of the art in Germany and the Nether- 
lands about the same period. The love of music 
in these countries had been growing among the 
people from the days of their minstrel poets and 
their wandering musicians. In Italy minstrelsy 
received but little attention or encouragement. 
The effect of this was probably felt when that 
extraordinary love of culture and admiration for 
art manifested itself amid the courts of her princes, 
about the middle of the fifteenth century. The 
love of melody then, as now, was deeply rooted in 
the nature of her people. Musical composition, 
however, of a high order, and able executants, were 



22 THE VIOLIN 

to be found elsewhere, and in Flanders in particular, 
and there the principal music and musicians were 
sought by the Italian dilettanti. To this fortuitous 
combination of melody and musical learning we 
owe the greatest achievements in the art of music. 
Upon it was raised the work of Palestrina, Scarlatti, 
and Corelli, . which their distinguished followers 
utilised with such judgment and effect. The pro- 
gress and development of the Madrigal in Italy 
may be said to have been co-equal with that of the 
Viol, for which its music served, and to which the 
Italians gave the same beauty of form and exquisite 
refinement. The ingenuity and skilfulness of the 
early German Viol makers was not less speedily 
recognised by the Italians than was the learning 
and power manifested by the Flemish motet writers. 
The work of the Italians with regard to both the 
Madrigal and the Viol was artistic in the highest 
degree, and such as could alone have been accom- 
plished by men nourished on the teachings of the 
Renaissance, and surrounded by its chief glories. 
There is evidence of German influence over the 
Italian Viol manufacture at the end of the fifteenth 
century, in the German-sounding names of makers 
located in Italy, and likewise in the character and 
construction of the oldest Italian Viols : notably, 
there is the crescent-shaped sound-hole common to 
the German Grosse-Geige and Klein-Geige. The 
most ancient Viols in existence are those by 
Hieronymus Brensius of Bologna, two of which 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 23 

are in the Museum of the Academy of Music at 
Bologna, and a third is in my possession. They 
have labels printed in Roman letters, and doubtless 
belong to the end of the fifteenth century. These 
instruments serve to illustrate the condition of the 
art of Viol-making in Italy at that period. They 
are rude in form and workmanship, and present a 
marked contrast to the high artistic work associated 
with the Italians in other branches of industry. 
This rudeness is indicative of this particular manu- 
facture being of recent importation, and of its 
having been received from Germany, and partly 
perhaps from the Low Countries, where instru- 
mental music was cultivated chiefly by the people, 
in which case utility would naturally have priority 
of design and workmanship. With the introduction 
of Viols, in connection with the Madrigal, into the 
palaces of Italy, together with their increased use 
in connection with the service of the Church, a 
demand speedily arose for instruments of elegant 
design and finished workmanship, in keeping with 
the high standard raised by Italian artists in every 
direction. The work on the Viol by Silvestro 
Ganassi, published at Venice in 1543, furnishes us 
with ample proof of the advance made by the 
Italians in Viol -making since Brensius worked. 
We see from a representation of a Viol in the 
above-mentioned work that the sound-holes are 
better formed, the scroll is artistically designed, 
and the whole harmonious. These steps towards 



24 THE VIOLIN 

perfection were mounted by Duiffoprugcar and 
Gasparo da Salo, both of whom rapidly developed 
the art. With Gasparo da Salo, or a contemporary, 
was witnessed the rejection of the crescent-formed 
sound-hole, and the adoption of that which has held 
its own for upwards of three centuries. The sound- 
holes of the Amati and of Stradivari are but those 
of Gasparo and his contemporaries, marked with 
their own individuality. All Viols until about 1520 
were furnished with pieces of gut tied round the 
neck and fingerboard to mark the divisions of the 
scale in short, were fretted. From the work of 
Ganassi we learn that the use of these divisions was 
optional, thus supplying us with authentic informa- 
tion of considerable value with regard to the 
gradual emancipation of this class of instrument 
from frets, and foreshadowing the union of the 
Geige or Fiddle with the Viol. Passing to the 
question of form given by the Italians, early in the 
sixteenth century, to Viols, we find the Violono or 
Bass Viol with its upper and lower sides, middle 
bouts, belly, and sound-holes almost identical with 
those of the Tenor Viols, the chief difference being 
in the back of the latter, which is modelled, whilst 
the former is flat. This was the form given to the 
Violono by Gasparo da Salo, and which has been 
changed in the upper portion of the body of the 
instrument, to permit of modern passages being 
executed with greater facility. The original finger- 
board was short, and generally fretted. The 



THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE VIOLIN 25 

number of strings was five or more, and not as we 
now string them with three or four. It will be seen 
that this form of instrument gives us what Mr. Charles 
Reade describes as the invention of Italy, namely 
" the four corners." I The same author in speaking 
of the order of invention remarks that he is puzzled 
"to time, the Violono, or as we childishly call it 
(after its known descendant) the Double Bass. If I 
were so presumptuous as to trust to my eye alone, 
I should say it was the first of them all." With 
this opinion I entirely agree, and I am also in 
unison with Mr. Reade in believing that the large 
Viola (played on or between the knees) was the 
next creation, the design of which was that of the 
Violono or Double Bass already referred to. The 
next and most important step was in all probability 
to make the common Geige or three- stringed Fiddle 
of the same shape as these Tenor and Contralto 
Viols, thus handing to us the present-shaped Violin. 
In the MS. notes of Lancetti, reference is made 
to a three-stringed Violin in the collection of Count 
Cozio di Salabue, which throws some light upon 
the question as to three-stringed Violins, of the 
form of the Italian Viola, having been made prior 
to the introduction of those with four strings tuned 

1 " Cremona Violins,"- Pall Mall Gazette, 1872. This 
reference applies to the corners and corner-blocks as made 
by Gasparo and all makers to the present time, in contra- 
distinction to those seen in the Viol da Gamba and early 
German Viols. 



26 THE VIOLIN 

in fifths. The instrument to which Lancetti refers 
was dated 1546, and was attributed to Andrea 
Amati. Until the beginning of the present century, 
this instrument remained in its original condition, 
when it was altered by the Brothers Mantegazza of 
Milan into a Violin with four strings. Mention of 
this curious and valuable fact furnishes us with the 
sole record of a three-stringed Violin having been 
in existence during the nineteenth century, and also 
supplies the link needful to connect the old type of 
Fiddle with the perfect instrument of the great 
Italian makers. When or where the four-stringed 
Violin tuned in fifths first appeared in Italy is a 
question the answer to which must ever remain 
buried in the past. It may have seen the light in 
Mantua, Bologna, or Brescia. The last-mentioned 
town is usually associated with its advent, and to 
Gasparo da Salo is given the credit of its author- 
ship. 



SECTION II 
The Construction of the Violin 

HT^HE construction of the present form of the 
-L Violin has occupied the attention of many 
scientific men. It cannot be denied that the subject 
possesses a charm sufficiently powerful to induce 
research, as endeavour is made to discover the 
causes for the vast superiority of the Violin of the 
seventeenth century over the many other forms of 
bow instruments which it has survived. The 
characteristic differences of the Violin have been 
obtained at the cost of many experiments in 
changing the outline and placing the sound-holes 
in various incongruous positions. These, and the 
many similar freaks of inventors in their search 
after perfection, have signally failed, a result to be 
expected when it is considered that the changes 
mentioned were unmeaning, and had nothing but 
novelty to recommend them. But what is far more 
extraordinary is the failure of the copyist, who, 
vainly supposing that he has truthfully followed the 
dimensions and general features of the Old Masters, 



28 THE VIOLIN 

at last discovers that he is quite unable to construct 
an instrument in any way deserving of comparison 
with the works of the period referred to. The 
Violin has thus hitherto baffled all attempts to force 
it into the " march of progress " which most things 
are destined to follow. It seems to scorn complica- 
tion in its structure, and successfully holds its own 
in its simplicity. There is in the Violin, as 
perfected by the great Cremonese masters, a 
simplicity combined with elegance of design, which 
readily courts the attention of thoughtful minds, 
and gives to it an air of mystery that cannot be 
explained to those outside the Fiddle world. Few 
objects possess so charming a display of curved 
lines as the members of the Violin family. Here 
we have Hogarth's famous line of beauty worked to 
perfection in the upper bouts, 1 in the lower bouts, 
in the outer line of the scroll, in the sound-hole. 
Everywhere the perfection of the graceful curve is 
to be seen. It has been asserted by Hogarth's 
enemies that he borrowed the famous line from an 
Italian writer named Lomazzo, who introduced it in 
a treatise on the Fine Arts. We will be more 
charitable, and say that he obtained it from the 
contemplation of the beauties of a Cremonese 
Violin. 

In looking at a Violin we are struck with admira- 
tion at a sight of consummate order and grace ; but 
it is the grace of nature rather than of mechanical 
1 A technical term for the sides. 



THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE VIOLIN 29 

art. The flow of curved lines which the eye detects 
upon its varied surface, one leading to another, and 
all duly proportioned to the whole figure, may 
remind us of the winding of a gentle stream, or the 
twine of tendrils in the trellised vine. 

Often is the question asked, What can there be in 
a simple Violin to attract so much notice ? What 
is it that causes men to treat this instrument as no 
other, to view it as an art picture, to dilate upon its 
form, colour, and date ? To the uninitiated such 
devotion appears to be a species of monomania, and 
attributable to a desire of singularity. It needs but 
little to show the inaccuracy of such hypotheses. 
In the first place, the true study of the V-iolin is a 
taste which needs as much cultivation as a taste 
for poetry or any other art, a due appreciation 
of which is impossible without such cultivation. 
Secondly, it needs, equally with these arts, in order 
to produce proficiency, that spark commonly known 
as genius, without which, cultivation, strictly speak- 
ing, is impossible, there being nothing to cultivate. 
We find that the most ardent admiration for the 
Violin regarded as a work of art, has ever been 
found to emanate from those who possessed tastes 
for kindred arts, Painters, musicians, and men of 
refined minds have generally been foremost among 
the admirers of the Violin. Much interest attaches 
to it from the fact of its being the sole instrument 
incapable of improvement, whether in form or in any 
other material feature. The only difference between 



30 THE VIOLIN 

the Violin of the sixteenth century and that of the 
nineteenth lies in the arrangement of the sound-bar 
(which is now longer, in order to bear the increased 
pressure caused by the diapason being higher than 
in former times), and the comparatively longer neck, 
so ordered to obtain increased length of string. 
These variations can scarcely be regarded as in- 
ventions, but simply as arrangements. The object 
of them was the need of adapting the instrument to 
modern requirements, so that it might be used in 
concert with others that have been improved, and 
allow the diapason to be raised. Lastly, it must be 
said that, above all, the Violin awakens the interest 
of its admirers by the tones which it can be made 
to utter in the hands of a skilful performer. It 
is, without doubt, marvellous that such sounds 
should be derivable from so small and simple- 
looking an instrument. Its expressiveness, power, 
and the extraordinary combinations which its string- 
ing admits of, truly constitute it the king of musical 
instruments. These somewhat desultory remarks 
may suffice to trace the origin of the value set upon 
the Violin both as a work of art and as a musical 
instrument. 

We will now proceed to consider the acoustical 
properties of the Violin. These are, in every 
particular, surprisingly great, and are the results of 
many tests, the chief of which has been the adoption 
of several varieties of wood in its construction. In 
Brescia, which was in all probability the cradle of 



THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE VIOLIN 31 

Violin manufacture, the selection of the material of 
the sides and back from the pear, lemon, and ash 
trees was very general, and there is every reason 
to believe that Brescia was the first place where 
such woods were used. It is possible that the 
makers who chose them for the sides and backs 
of their instruments considered it desirable to 
have material more akin to that adopted for the 
bellies, which was the finest description of pine, and 
that the result was found to be a tone of great mel- 
lowness. If they used these woods with this inten- 
tion, their calculations were undoubtedly correct. 
They appear to have worked these woods with but 
few exceptions for their Tenors, Violoncellos, and 
Double Basses, while they adopted the harder 
woods for their Violins, all which facts tend to 
show that these rare old makers did not consider 
soft wood eligible for the back and sides of the 
leading instrument ; and later experiment has shown 
them to have arrived at a correct conclusion on this 
point. The experiments necessary to obtain these 
results have been effected by cutting woods of 
several kinds and qualities into various sizes, so as 
to give the sounds of the diatonic scale. By 
comparing the intensity and quality of tone pro- 
duced by each sample of wood, plane-tree * and 

1 The Germans call the plane-tree morgenlandischer ahorn 
i.e., " oriental maple." From the German word ahorn is 
probably derived the term " air wood," often corrupted into 
u hair-wood." Thomas Mace says, respecting the lute, " the 



32 THE VIOLIN 

sycamore have been found to surpass the rest. 
The Cremonese makers seem to have adhered 
chiefly to the use of maple, varying the manner 
of cutting it. First, they made the back in one 
piece, technically known as a "whole back"; 
secondly, the back in two parts ; thirdly, the cutting 
known as the "slab back." There being consider- 
able doubt as to the mode of dividing the timber, 
the woodcuts given will assist the reader to under- 
stand it. Fig. i represents the cutting for the back 
in two pieces the piece which is separated from 





FIG. i. 

the log is divided. Fig. 2 shows the method 
adopted to obtain the slab form. 

This mode of cutting is constantly met with in 
the works of the Brescian makers, and likewise in 
those of the early Cremonese. Andrea Amati 
invariably adopted this form. Stradivari rarely cut 
his wood slab-form. Joseph Guarneri made a few 
Violins of his best epoch with this cutting, the 
varnish on which is of an exquisite orange 

air-wood is absolutely the best, and next to that our English 
maple." Engel (" Researches into the Early History of the 
Violin Family"). 



THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE VIOLIN 33 

colour, so transparent that the curls of the wood 
beneath resemble richly illuminated clouds. 

There can be no doubt whatever that the Cre- 
monese and Brescian makers were exceed- 
ingly choice in the selection of their material, 
and their discrimination in this particular does 
not appear to have risen so much from a 
regard to the beauty as to the acoustic properties of 
the wood, to which they very properly gave the 
first place in their consideration. We have evidence 
of much weight upon this interesting question in the 
frequent piecings found on the works of Cremona 
makers, pointing to a seeming preference on their 
part to retain a piece of wood of known acoustic 
properties rather than to work in a larger or better 
preserved portion at the probable expense of tone. 
The time and care required for such a delicate 
operation must have been sufficient to have enabled 
the maker, had he been so minded, to have made a 
complete instrument. There is also ample proof 
that Joseph Guarneri possessed wood to the ex- 
ceptional qualities of which he was fully alive, and 
the same may be said of Stradivari, Ruggeri, and 
others. It is scarcely reasonable to suppose that in 
the seventeenth century there was a dearth in Italy 
of timber suitable for the manufacture of Violins, 
and that in consequence these eminent makers were 
compelled to patch and join their material to suit 
their purpose. They were men who were in the 
enjoyment of a patronage certainly sufficient to 



34 THE VIOLIN 

enable them to follow their calling without privation 
of any kind. Scarcity of pine and sycamore, good 
or bad, could not have been the cause, since we find 
Italian cabinet-work of great beauty that was manu- 
factured at this same period. The plane-tree and 
pine used by the Amati, Stradivari, and the chief 
masters in Italy, was usually of foreign growth, and 
was taken from the Tyrol and I stria. Its value was, 
therefore, in advance of Italian wood, but hardly 
so much as to place it beyond the reach of the 
Cremonese masters. It is, further, improbable that 
these masters of the art should have expended such 
marvellous care and toil over their work, pieced as 
it frequently was like mosaic, when for a trifling sum 
they could have avoided such a task to their in- 
genuity by purchasing fresh wood. We are there- 
fore forced to admit that there must have been some 
cause of great weight which induced them to apply 
so much time and labour, and that the problem can 
only be accounted for by the solution before pro- 
posed, viz., that external appearance was of less 
importance than the possession of acoustic pro- 
perties thoroughly adapted to the old makers' 
purpose, and that the scarcity of suitable wood was 
such as to make them hoard and make use of every 
particle. The selection of material was hence con- 
sidered to be of prime importance by these makers ; 
and by careful study they brought it to a state of 
great perfection. The knowledge they gained of 
this vital branch of their art is enveloped in a 



THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE VIOLIN 35 

similar obscurity to that which conceals their famous 
varnish, and in these branches of Violin manu- 
facture rests the secret of the Italian success, and 
until it is rediscovered the Cremonese will remain 
unequalled in the manufacture of Violins. 

We may now pass to the consideration of the 
various constituent parts of a Violin. It will be 
found, if a Violin be taken to pieces, that it is 
constructed of no less than fifty-eight separate parts, 
an astonishing number of factors for so small and 
simple-looking an instrument. The back is made 
of maple or sycamore, in one or two parts ; the 
belly of the finest quality of Swiss pine, and from 
a piece usually divided ; the sides, like the back, of 
maple, in six pieces, bent to the required form by 
means of a heated iron ; the linings, which are used 
to secure the back and belly to the sides, are twelve 
in number, sometimes made of lime-tree, but also of 
pine. The bass or sound-bar is of pine, placed 
under the left foot of the bridge in a slightly oblique 
position, in order to facilitate the vibrating by giving 
about the same position as the line of the strings. 
The divergence is usually one-twelfth of an inch, 
throughout its entire length of ten inches. It is 
curious to discover that this system of placing the 
bar 'was adopted by Brensius of Bologna, a Viol- 
maker of the fifteenth century, and by Gasparo da 
Salo. The later Violin-makers, however, for the 
most part, do not appear to have followed the 
example, they having placed it in a straight 



36 THE VIOLIN 

line, thus leaving the system to be re-discovered 
The bar of the Violin not only serves the purpose 
of strengthening the instrument in that part where 
the pressure of the bridge is greatest, but forms a 
portion of the structure at once curious and deeply 
interesting ; it may indeed be called the nervous 
system of the Violin, so exquisitely sensitive is it to 
external touch. The slightest alteration in its 
position will effect such changes in the tone as often 
to make a good Violin worthless. Those trouble- 
some notes technically known as " wolf notes " by 
its delicate adjustment are sometimes removed, or 
passed to intervals where the disagreeable sound 
is felt with less intensity. Numerous attempts have 
been made to reduce these features to a philosophy, 
but the realisation of the coveted discovery appears 
as distant as ever. The most minute variation in 
the construction of the instrument necessitates a 
different treatment of this active agent as regards 
its conjunction with the bridge ; and when it is 
considered that scarcely two Violins can be found 
of exactly identical structure, it must be admitted 
that the difficulties in the way of laying down 
any set of hard and fast rules for their regulation 
seem to be insuperable. 

The next important feature of the internal 
organism is the sound-post, which serves many 
purposes. It is the medium by which the vibratory 
powers of the instrument are set in motion ; it 
gives support to the right side of the belly, it 



THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE VIOLIN 37 

transmits vibrations, and regulates both the power 
and quality of tone. The terms used for this vital 
factor of a Violin on the Continent at once prove 
its importance. The Italians and French call it 
the "Soul," and the Germans the "Voice." If we 
accept the bass-bar as the nervous system of a 
Violin, the sound-post may be said to perform the 
functions of the heart with unerring regularity. 
The pulsations of sound are regulated by this 
admirable contrivance. If mellowness of quality 
be sought, a slight alteration of its position or 
form will produce a favourable change of singular 
extent ; if intensity of tone be requisite, the sound- 
post is again the regulator. It must, of course, be 
understood that its power of changing the quality 
of the tone is limited in proportion to the con- 
stitutional powers of the instrument in each case. 
It is not pretended that a badly constructed 
instrument can be made a good one by means of 
this subtle regulator, any more than a naturally 
weak person can be made robust by diet and 
hygiene. 

The position of the sound-post is usually one- 
eighth to three-eighths of an inch behind the right 
foot of the bridge, the distance being variable 
according to the model of the instrument. If the 
Violin be high-built, the post requires to be nearer 
the bridge, that its action may be stronger ; whilst 
flat-modelled instruments require that the post be 
set further away from the bridge. It is not possible 



38 THE VIOLIN 

to have any uniform arrangement of the sound- 
post in all instruments ; as we have remarked 
before in reference to the bass-bar, the variations 
in the thickness, outline, model, &c., of the Violin 
are so frequent as to defy identity of treatment ; 
uniformity has been sought for, but ^without success. 

The post can only be adjusted by a skilful 
workman, who either plays himself or has the 
advantage of having the various adjustments 
tested by a performer. The necessity of leaving 
this exceedingly delicate matter in practised hands 
cannot be too strongly impressed upon the amateur, 
for the damage done in consequence of want of 
skill is often irreparable. 

There are two methods of setting the sound-post 
in the instrument : the first fixes it in such a 
position as to place the grain of the post parallel 
with the grain of the belly ; the second sets it 
crosswise. 

The next important feature to be mentioned is 
the bridge, which forms no small part of the 
vibrating mechanism of the instrument, and needs 
the utmost skill in its arrangement. Its usual 
position is exactly between the two small niches 
marked in each sound-hole, but this arrangement 
is sometimes altered in the case of the stop being 
longer or shorter. Many forms of bridges have 
been in use at different periods, but that now- 
adopted is, without doubt, the best. In selecting 
a bridge great care is requisite that the wood be 



THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE VIOLIN 39 

suitable to the constitution of the Violin. If the 
instrument is wanting in brilliancy, a bridge having 
solidity of fibre is necessary ; if wanting in mellow- 
ness, one possessing soft qualities should be 
selected. 

We now pass to the neck of the Violin, which 
is made of sycamore or plane-tree. Its length has 
been increased since the days of the great Italian 
masters, who seem to have paid but little attention 
to this portion of the instrument, in regard to its 
appearance and as to the wood used for its manu- 
facture, which was of the plainest description. It 
may be observed that in those times the florid 
passages which we now hear in Violin music were 
in their infancy, the first and second positions being 
those chiefly used ; hence the little attention paid 
to the handle of the instrument. Modern require- 
ments have made it imperative that the neck 
should be well shaped, neither too flat nor too 
round, but of a happy medium. The difficulties of 
execution are sensibly lessened when due atten- 
tion is paid to this requirement. 

The finger-board is of ebony, and varies a little 
in length according to the position of the sound- 
holes. To form the board properly is a delicate 
operation, for if it be not carefully made the 
strings jar against it, and the movements of the 
bow are impeded. The nut, or rest, is that small 
piece of ebony over which the strings pass on 
the finger-board. 



4 o THE VIOLIN 

The purfling is composed of three strips of 
lime-tree, two of which are stained black. Whale- 
bone purfling has been frequently used, particularly 
by the old Amsterdam makers. 

The principal parts of the instrument have now 
been described, and there remain -only the pegs, 
blocks, strings, and tail-piece, the sum of which 
makes up the number of fifty-eight constituent 
parts as before mentioned. There is still, how- 
ever, one item of the construction to be mentioned 
which does not form a separate portion of the 
Violin, but which is certainly worthy of notice, 
viz., the button, which is that small piece of wood 
against which the heel of the neck rests. The 
difficulty of making this apparently insignificant 
piece can only be understood by those who have 
gone through the various stages of Violin manu- 
facture. The amount of finish given to the button 
affects in a great measure the whole instrument, 
and if there is any defect of style it is sure to 
be apparent here. It is a prominent feature, and 
the eye naturally rests upon it : as the key-stone 
to the arch, so is the button to the Violin. 

The sound-holes, or /Dholes, it is almost needless 
to remark, are features of vital importance. Upon 
the form given to them, and the manner of cutting 
them, largely depend the volume and quality of 
tone. The Italian makers of Brescia and Cremona 
appear to have been aware of the singular influence 
the formation of the sound-hole has upon the 



THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE VIOLIN 41 

production and quality of sound. The variety of 
original shapes they gave to them is evidence of 
their knowledge. Appearance in keeping with the 
outline of their design may have influenced them 
in some measure, but not entirely. Most makers 
used patterns from which to cut their sound-holes ; 
Joseph Guarneri and some others appear to have 
drawn them on the belly, and cut them accordingly. 

From the foregoing remarks upon the various 
portions of the Violin it may be assumed that the 
reader has gained sufficient insight into the process 
of its manufacture to enable him to dispense with a 
more minute description of each stage. 

In conclusion, I cannot refrain from cautioning 
possessors of good instruments against entrusting 
them into the barbaric hands of pretended repairers, 
who endeavour to persuade them into the belief 
that it is necessary to do this, that, and the other 
for their benefit. The quack doctors of the Violin 
are legion they are found in every town and city, 
ready to prey upon the credulity of the lovers of 
Fiddles, and the injury they inflict on their helpless 
patients is frequently irreparable. Unfortunately, 
amateurs are often prone to be continually 
unsettling their instruments by trying different 
bars, sound-posts, &c., without considering the 
danger they run of damaging their property instead 
of improving it. Should your instrument need any 
alteration, no matter how slight, consult only those 
who have made the subject a special study. There 



42 THE VIOLIN 

are a few such men to be found in the chief cities 
of Europe, men whose love for the instrument 
is of such a nature that it would not permit 
them to recommend alterations prejudicial to its 
well-being. 



SECTION III 
Italian and other Strings 

UPON the strings of the Violin depends in a 
great measure the successful regulation of 
the instrument. If, after the careful adjustment 
of bridge, sound-post, and bass-bar, strings are 
added which have not been selected with due 
care and regard to their relative proportion, the 
labour expended upon the important parts named 
is at once rendered useless. Frequently the 
strings are the objects least considered when the 
regulation of a Violin is attempted ; but if this 
be the case, results anything but satisfactory 
ensue. It is, therefore, important that every 
Violinist should endeavour to make himself ac- 
quainted with the different varieties and powers 
of strings, that he may arrange his instrument with 
due facility. 

The remarkable conservatism attending the struc- 
tural formation of the Violin exists more or less 
in the appliances necessary for the awakening of 
its dormant music. If we turn to its pegs, we 
find them of the same character as the peg of its 



43 



44 THE VIOLIN 

far-removed ancestor, the monochord ; and if we 
compare the Italian peg of the seventeenth century 
with a modern one, the chief difference lies in 
the latter being more gross and ugly. Upon 
turning to the bridge, we see that the bridge of 
to-day is almost identical with the bridge of 
Stradivari ; and when we come to the strings of 
the Violin, we discover that we have added but 
little, if anything, to the store of information 
regarding them possessed by our forefathers. 

In, perhaps, the earliest book on the Lute, that 
of Adrian Le Roy, published in Paris in 1570, 
and translated into English in 1574, 1 we read: 
" I will not omit to give you to understand how 
to know strings." "It is needful to prove them 
between the hands in the manner set forth in 
the figures hereafter pictured, which show on the 
finger and to the eye the difference from the true 
with the false." The instructions here given, it 
will be seen, are those set forth .by Louis Spohr 
in his " Violin School." In the famous musical 
work of Merseene, published in 1648, we find an 
interesting account of strings ; he says they are 
of "metal, and the intestines of sheep." " The 
thicker chords of the great Viols and of Lutes 
are made of thirty or forty single intestines, and 
the best are made in Rome and some other cities 

1 Fetis, in his notice of Le Roy, states that the first 
edition of this rare book was published in 1557, and was 
translated by J. Alford into English in 1568 



ITALIAN AND OTHER STRINGS 



45 



in Italy. This superiority is owing to the air, 
the water, or the herbage on which the sheep of 
Italy feed." He adds that "chords maybe made 
of silk, flax, or other material," but that " animal 
chords are far the best." The experience of 
upwards of two centuries has not shaken the 







soundness of Merseene's opinion of the superiority 
of gut strings over those made of silk and steel. 
Although strings of steel and silk are made to 
some extent on account of their durability and 
their fitness for warm climates, no Violinist familiar 
with the true quality of tone belonging to his 
instrument is likely to torture his ears with the 



46 THE VIOLIN 

sound of strings made with thread or iron. Con- 
tinuing our inquiries among the old musical 
writers in reference to the subject of strings, we 
find Doni says in his musical treatise, published 
in 1647: "There are many particulars relating to 
the construction of instruments which are unknown 
to modern artificers, as, namely, that the best 
strings are made when the north and the worst 
when the south wind blows," a truism well under- 
stood by experienced string manufacturers. Thomas 
Mace, in his curious book on the Lute, enters at 
some length into the question of strings, and 
speaks in glowing terms of his Venetian Catlins. 
The above references to strings, met with in the 
writers of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, 
indicate a full knowledge of the most important, 
facts concerning them on the part of the musicians 
and makers of those days ; and notwithstanding 
our superior mechanical contrivances in the manu- 
facture, it is doubtful whether modern strings are 
generally equal to those made in times when 
leisure waited on quality, in lieu of speed on 
quantity. 

Musical strings are manufactured in Italy, Ger- 
many, France, and England. The Italians rank 
first, as in past times, in this manufacture, their 
proficiency being evident in the three chief requis- 
ites for string, viz., high finish, great durability, 
and purity of sound. There are manufactories at 
Rome, Naples, Padua, and Verona, the separate 



ITALIAN AND OTHER STRINGS 47 

characteristics of which are definitely marked in 
their produce. Those strings which are manu- 
factured at Rome are exceedingly hard and 
brilliant, and exhibit a slight roughness of finish. 
The Neapolitan samples are smoother and softer 
than the Roman, and also whiter in appearance. 
Those of Padua are highly polished and durable, 
but frequently false. The Veronese strings are 
softer than the Paduan, and deeper in colour. 
The variations described are distinct, and the 
more remarkable that all the four kinds are pro- 
duced by one and the same nation ; as, however, 
the raw material is identical throughout Italy, the 
process of manufacture must be looked upon as 
the real cause of the difference noticed. The 
German strings now rank next to the Italian, 
Saxony being the seat of manufacture. They 
may be described as very white and smooth, 
the better kinds being very durable. Their chief 
fault arises from their being over-bleached, and 
hence faulty in sound. The French take the 
third place in the manufacture. Their strings 
are carefully made, and those of the larger sizes 
answer well ; but the smaller strings are wanting in 
durability. The English manufacture all qualities, 
but chiefly the cheaper kinds ; they are durable, 
but unevenly made, and have a dark appear- 
ance. 

The cause of variation in quality of the several 
kinds enumerated arises simply from the difference 



48 THE VIOLIN 

of climate. In Italy an important part of the 
manufacture is carried on in the open air, and 
the beautiful climate is made to effect that which 
has to be done artificially in other countries. 
Hence the Italian superiority. Southern Germany 
adopts, to some extent, similar means in making 
strings ; France, to a less degree ; while England 
is obliged to rely solely on artificial processes. It 
therefore amounts to this the further from Italy 
the seat of manufacture, the more inferior the 
string. 

From the foregoing references we find that 
strings, although called "catgut," are not made 
from the intestines of that domestic animal. 
Whether they were originally so made, and hence 
derive their name, it is impossible to learn. 
Marston, the old dramatist, says : 

" How the musicians 

Hover with nimble sticks o'er squeaking Crowds, 1 
Tickling the dried guts of a mewing cat." 

We may be sure, however, that had the raw 
material been drawn from that source up to the 
present time, there would have been no need to 
check the supply of the feline race by destroying 
nine kittens out of ten ; on the contrary, the 
rearing of cats would indeed have been a lucra- 
tive occupation. A time-honoured error is thus 

1 The old English name for a Fiddle. 



ITALIAN AND OTHER STRINGS 49 

commemorated in a word, the origin of which 
must be ascribed to want of thought. If the 
number of cats requisite for the string manufac- 
ture be considered for a moment, it is easy to see 
that Shylock's " harmless necessary " domestics are 
under no contribution in this matter. Strings are 
made from the intestines of the sheep and goat, 
chiefly of the former. The best qualities are 
made from the intestines of the lamb, the strength 
of which is very great if compared with those 
of a sheep more than a year old. This being 
so, the chief manufacture of the year is carried 
on in the month of September, the September 
string-makings being analogous to October brew- 
ings. The demand for strings made at this par- 
ticular season far exceeds the supply, and notably 
is this the case with regard to strings of small 
size, which have to bear so great a strain that 
if they were not made of the best material there 
would be little chance of their endurance. To 
enter into a description of the various processes 
of the manufacture is unnecessary, as it would 
form a subject 'of little interest to the general 
reader ; we may therefore conclude this brief 
notice of strings by a few rules to be observed 
in their selection, 

Endeavour to obtain strings of uniform thickness 
throughout, a requisite which can only be in- 
sured by careful gauging. In selecting the E 
string, choose those that are most transparent ; 

E 



50 THE VIOLIN 

the seconds and thirds, as they are made with 
several threads, are seldom very clear. The 
firsts never have more than a few threads in 
them, and hence, absence of transparency in 
their case denotes inferior material. Before 
putting on the first string, in particular, in order 
to test its purity it will be well to follow Le 
Roy's advice, which is to hold between the 
fingers of each hand a portion of the string 
sufficient to stretch from the bridge to the nut, 
and to set it in vibration. If two lines only 
be apparent, the string is free from falseness ; 
but if a third line be produced, the contrary 
conclusion must be assumed. In the case of 
seconds and thirds we cannot always rely on 
this test, as the number of threads used in their 
manufacture frequently prevents the line from 
being perfectly clear. The last precaution of 
moment is to secure perfect fifths, which can 
only be done by taking care that the four 
strings are in true proportion and uniform with 
each other. To string a violin correctly is a 
very difficult .undertaking, and requires consider- 
able patience. The first consideration should 
be the constitution of the Violin : the strings 
that please one instrument torture another. 
Neither Cremonese Violins nor old instruments 
in general require to be heavily strung : the 
mellowness of the wood and their delicate con- 
struction require the stringing to be such as 




Plate 3, 



VIOLONCELLO BY ANTONIO STRADIVARI. 
PRESENTED TO SIGNOR PIATTI BY GENERAL OLIVER. 

(Herr Robert Mendelssohn.) 



[To face />. 50. 



ITALIAN AND OTHER STRINGS 51 

will assist in bringing out that richness of tone 
which belongs to first-rate instruments. If the 
bridge and sound-board be heavily weighted with 
thick strings, vibration will surely be checked. 
In the case of modern instruments, heavy in 
wood, and needing constant use to wear down 
their freshness, strings of a larger size may be 
used with advantage, and particularly when such 
instruments are in use for orchestral purposes. 

Vast improvements have been effected in the 
stringing of Violins within the last thirty years. 
Strings of immense size were used alike on 
Violins, Violoncellos, Tenors, and Double Basses. 
Robert Lindley, the king of English Violoncellists, 
used a string for his first very nearly equal in 
size to the second of the present time, and the 
same robust proportion was observed in his 
other strings. The Violoncello upon which he 
played was by Forster, and would bear much 
heavier stringing than an Italian instrument ; 
and, again, he was a most forcible player, and 
his power of fingering quite exceptional. 
Dragonetti, the famous Double-Bass player, and 
coadjutor of Lindley, possessed similar powers, 
and used similar strings as regards size. Their 
system of stringing was adopted indiscriminately. 
Instruments whether weakly or strongly built 
received uniform treatment, the result being in 
many cases an entire collapse, and the most 
disappointing effects in tone. It was vainly 



52 THE VIOLIN 

supposed that the ponderous strings of Dragonetti 
and Lindley were the talisman by use of which 
their tone would follow as a matter of course, 
whereas in point of fact it was scarcely possible 
to make the instruments utter a sound when 
deprived of the singular muscular power possessed 
by those famous players. After Lindley 's death 
his system passed away gradually, and attention 
was directed to the better adaptation of strings 
to the instrument, and also to the production of 
perfect fifths. 

We have now only to speak of covered strings, 
in which it is more difficult to obtain perfection 
than in the case of those of gut. There are 
several kinds of covered strings. There are 
those of silver wire, which are very durable, 
and have a soft quality of sound very suitable 
to old instruments, and are therefore much used 
by artistes ; there are those of copper plated 
with silver, and also of copper without plating, 
which have a powerful sound ; and, lastly, there 
are those which are made with mixed wire, an 
arrangement which prevents in a measure the 
tendency to rise in pitch, a disadvantage common 
to covered strings and caused by expansion of 
the metals ; these strings also possess a tone 
which is a combination of that produced by silver 
and copper strings. Here again, however, great 
discrimination is needed, viz., before putting on 
the fourth string. The instrument must be under- 



ITALIAN AND OTHER STRINGS 53 

stood. There are Violins which will take none 
but fourths of copper, there are others that 
would be simply crippled by their adoption. It 
cannot be too much impressed upon the mind 
of the player that the Violin requires deep and 
patient study with regard to every point connected 
with its regulation. So varied are these in- 
struments in construction and constitution, that 
before their powers can be successfully developed 
they must be humoured, and treated as the child 
of a skilful educator, who watches to gain an 
insight into the character of his charge, and 
then adopts the best means for its advancement 
according to the circumstances ascertained. 

The strain and pressure of the strings upon 
a Violin being an interesting subject of inquiry, 
I give the annexed particulars (see Table on 
page 54) from experiments made in conjunction 
with a friend interested in the subject, and 
possessed of the necessary knowledge to arrive 
at accurate results. 

The Violin being held in a frame in a nearly 
upright position, so that the string hung just 
clear of the nut to avoid friction, the note was 
obtained by pressing the string to the nut. 

When the Violin was laid in a horizontal 
position, and the string passed over a small 
pulley, an additional weight of two or three 
pounds was required to overcome the friction 



54 



THE VIOLIN 



TENSION OF VIOLIN STRINGS. 

Ascertained by Hanging a Dead Weight on the End of the String. 







*T <y O 


G 


c *u 


u 








O 


O " 


J= 






W)-*-* 


U " 


QJ^ 


s 


tab 




|c"-.c 


X 


3*0 


31 o 


| 




-0 *0 


$ V 




S 


Bl 

.Oc/J 
II 


SIZE. 


. Q c r: 
"2^ 
C 5 o 

- S. o 

C B O 


0) l3jQ 

? 

T3 

gx 


& o a) 

i^ 

"2^1 

^ .Q 


2"o 

PI 

s a 


"o 




^ M o 

<n taoe 1 -' 
G G "* ' 


?i3 

a 
Z 


^ O 

P 


C 03 






V 3iJ 
H J3C 


o 
Q 


ii 


O 

05 






Ib. 


Ib. oz. 


Ib. oz. 


Ib. oz. 


ISt 


Thick 


23 


10 3^ 


10 3^ 





M 


Medium 


22 


9 12 


9 12 





"~ 


Small 


18 


8 o 


8 o 





2nd 


Thick 


i5* 


6 14 


4 9i 


2 4* 


M 


Medium 


i5i 


6 n 


4 7t 


2 4 


11 


Small 


13* 


6 o 


4 o 


2 O 


yd 


Thick 


i3i 


5 X 4 


i.5t 


3 14! 


n 


Medium 


I2f 


5 Io i 


i i3f 


3 I2f 


M 


Small 


ii 


4 14 


I IO 


3 4 


4th 


Thick 


ii 


4 14 





4 14 





Medium 


rot 


4 io 





4 Io * 





Small 


Say 10 


4 7 





4 7 


The 


total of four 










thick strings is ... 


6 2 f 


27 i3i 


16 12 


ii i 


The total of four 










small strings is ... 


52i 


23 5 


13 10 


9 ii 



ITALIAN AND OTHER STRINGS 



55 



on the nut and that of the pulley. Therefore 
it is probable that the difference in the results 
obtained by other experiments may have arisen 
from the different methods employed. But with 
a dead weight hung on the end of each string 
there could be no error. 



B A C is the average angle formed by a string passing over the 
bridge of a Violin, and the tension acts 'equally in the direction A B, 
A C. 




Take A C = A B. 

From the point B draw B D parallel to A C. And from the point C 
draw C D parallel to A B, cutting B D at D. 

Join A D. 

Then, if a force acting on the point A, in the direction of A B, be re- 
presented in magnitude by the line A B, an equal force acting in the 
direction A C will be represented by the line A C, and the diagonal A D 
will represent the direction and magnitude of the force acting on the point 
A, to keep it at rest. 

N.B. The bridge of a Violin does not divide the angle BAG 
quite equally, but so nearly that A D may be taken as the position of 
the bridge. 

Also, the plane passing through the string of a Violin, on both sides 
of the bridge, is not quite perpendicular to the belly. To introduce this 
variation into the calculation would render that less simple, and it will 
be sufficient to state that about the iSoth part must be deducted 
from the downward pressures given in the above table from the first 
and fourth strings, and about the 3Ooth part for the second and third strings. 
The total to be deducted for the four strings will not exceed three 
ounces. 

On the line A B or A C set off a scale of equal parts,- beginning at A, 
and on A D a similar scale beginning at A. 



56 THE VIOLIN 

Mark off on the scale A B as many divisions as there are Ibs . in the 
tension of a string, for example 18, and from that point draw a line 
parallel to B D, cutting A D at the point 8 in that scale. Then, if the 
tension of a string be 18 lb., the downward pressure on the bridge will 
be 8 lb. ; and therefore for the above angle the downward pressure 
of any string on the bridge will be T$ = % of the tension of that 
string. 

The whole of the downward pressure of the first string falls upon the 
Treble Foot of the Bridge. 

The downward pressure of the second string is about on the Treble 
Foot of the Bridge, and on the Bass Foot. 

The downward pressure of the third string is about J on the Treble 
Foot, and on the Bass Foot. 

The whole of the downward pressure of the fourth string falls upon the 
Bass Foot of the Bridge. 



SECTION IV 
The Italian School 

" I ^HE fifteenth century may be considered as 
-L the period when the art of making instruments 
of the Viol class took root in Italy, a period rich 
in men labouring in the cause of Art. The long 
list of honoured names connected with Art in Italy 
during the fifteenth, sixteenth, and seventeenth cen- 
turies is a mighty roll-call indeed ! The memory 
dwells upon the number of richly-stored minds 
that have, within the limits of these three centuries, 
bequeathed their art treasures to all time.; and if 
here we cannot suppress a comparison of the art 
world of the present Italy with that of the periods 
named, still less can we fail to be astonished as 
we discover the abyss into which Italy must be 
judged to have sunk in point of merit, when 
measured by the high standard which in former 
days she set herself. But perhaps the greatest 
marvel of all is the rapidity of the decadence when 
it once set in, as it did immediately after the culmi- 
nating point of artistic fame had been reached. 
To reflect for a moment upon the many famous 



57 



58 THE VIOLIN 

men in Italy engaged in artistic vocations contem- 
porary with the great Viol and Violin makers 
cannot fail to be interesting to the lovers of our 
instrument, for it has the effect of surrounding 
their favourite with an interest extending beyond 
its own path. It also serves to make prominent 
the curious fact that the art of Italian Violin- 
making emerged from its chrysalis state when 
the painters of Italy displayed their greatest 
strength of genius, and perfected itself when the 
Fine Arts of Italy were cast in comparative dark- 
ness. It is both interesting and remarkable that 
the art of Italian Violin-making which in its 
infancy shared with all the arts the advantage 
attending the revival of art and learning should 
have been the last to mature and die. 

Whilst the artist, scientist, and musician, 
Leonardo da Vinci, was painting, inventing, and 
singing .his sonnets to the accompaniment of his 
Lute ; whilst Raphael was executing the com- 
mands of Leo X., and Giorgio was superintending 
the manufacture of his inimitable majolica ware, 
the Viol-makers of Bologna were designing their 
instruments and assimilating them to the registers 
of the human voice, in order that the parts of 
Church and chamber madrigals might be played 
instead of sung, or that the voices might be 
sustained by the instruments. 1 

x The importance of this epoch in its bearings upon 
instrumental music generally, and stringed instrument music 



THE ITALIAN SCHOOL 59 

If we turn to the days of Gasparo da Salo, 
Maggini, and Andrea Amati, we find that while 
they were sending forth their Fiddles, Titian was 
painting his immortal works, and Benvenuto Cellini, 
the greatest goldsmith of his own or any age, was 
setting the jewels of popes and princes, and enam- 
elling the bindings of their books. Whilst the 
master-minds of Antonio Stradivari and Giuseppe 
Guarneri del Gesu were occupied with those instru- 
ments which have caused their names to be known 
throughout the civilised world (and ^/zcivilised 
too, for many thousands of Violins are yearly made 
into which their cherished names are thrust, after 
which they are despatched for the negro's use), 
Canaletto was painting his Venetian squares and 
canals, Venetians whose names are unrecorded 
were blowing glass of wondrous form and beauty. 
At the same time, in the musical world, Corelli 
was writing his jigs and sarabands, Gemimani 
penning one of the first instruction books for the 
Violin, and Tartini dreaming his " Sonata del 



in particular, can hardly be over-estimated. It may be said 
that in the Middle Ages no written music for instruments 
existed. The melodies and accompaniments produced from 
instruments were either extemporaneous or parrot-like 
imitations of vocal music. Madrigals and a few dances 
constituted the food upon which instruments were nursed 
until towards the close of the sixteenth century, when 
Gabrielli, or a contemporary musician, prepared a special 
and distinct aliment, the outcome of which is found in the 
symphonies of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven. 



60 THE VIOLIN 

Diavolo " ; and while Guadagnini and the stars 
of lesser magnitude were exercising their calling, 
Viotti, the originator of a school of Violin-playing, 
was writing his concertos, and Boccherini laying 
the foundation of classical chamber-music of a 
light and pleasing character. It would be easy 
to continue this vein of thought, were it not likely 
to become irksome to the reader ; enough has 
been said to refresh the memory as to the flourish- 
ing state of Italian art during these times. What 
a mine of wealth was then opened up for 
succeeding generations ! and how curious is the 
fact that not only the Violin, but its music, has 
been the creature of the most luxurious age of 
art ; for in that golden age musicians contemporary 
with the great Violin-makers were writing music 
destined to be better understood and appreciated 
when the Violins then made should have reached 
their maturity. 

That Italy's greatest Violin-makers lived in 
times favourable to the production of works 
possessing a high degree of merit, cannot be 
doubted. They were surrounded by composers 
of rare powers, and also by numerous orchestras. 
These orchestras, composed mainly of stringed 
instruments, were scattered all over Italy, Germany, 
and France, in churches, convents, and palaces, 
and must have created a great demand for bow 
instruments of a high class. 

The bare mention of a few of the names of 



THE ITALIAN SCHOOL 61 

composers then existing will be sufficient to bring 
to the mind of the reader well versed in musical 
matters the compositions to which they owe their 
fame. In the sixteenth century, Orlando di Lasso, 
Isaac, and Palestrina were engaged in writing 
Church music, in which stringed instruments were 
heard ; in the seventeenth, lived Stradella, Lotti, 
Bononcini, Lully, and Corelli. In the eighteenth 
century, the period when the art of Violin-making 
was at its zenith, the list is indeed a glorious one. 
At this point is the constellation of Veracini, 
Geminiani, Vivaldi, Locatelli, Boccherini, Tartini, 
Viotti, Nardini, among'the Italians ; while in France 
it is the epoch of Leclair and Gavinies, composers 
of Violin music of the highest excellence. Sur- 
rounded by these men of rare genius, who lived 
but to disseminate a taste for the king of instru- 
ments, the makers of Violins must certainly have 
enjoyed considerable patronage, and doubtless those 
of tried ability readily obtained highly remunerative 
prices for their instruments, and were encouraged 
in their march towards perfection both in design 
and workmanship. Besides the many writers for 
the Violin, and executants, there were numbers of 
ardent patrons of the Cremonese and Brescian 
makers. Among these may be mentioned the 
Duke of Ferrara, Charles IX., Cardinal Ottoboni 
(with whom Corelli was in high favour), Cardinal 
Orsini (afterwards Pope Benedict XIII.), Victor 
Amadeus Duke of Savoy, the Duke of Modena, 



62 THE VIOLIN 

the Marquis Ariberti, Charles III. (afterwards 
Charles VI., Emperor of Germany), and the 
Elector of Bavaria, all of whom gave encourage- 
ment to the art by ordering complete sets of 
stringed instruments for their chapels and for 
other purposes. By the aid of such valuable 
patronage the makers were enabled to centre 
their attention on their work, and received reward 
commensurate with the amount of skill displayed. 
This had the effect of raising them above the 
status of the ordinary workman, and permitted 
them as a body to pass their lives amid com- 
parative plenty. There are, without doubt, in- 
stances of great results obtained under trying 
circumstances, but the genius required to. combine 
a successful battle with adversity with high pro- 
ficiency in art is indeed a rare phenomenon. 
Carlyle says of such minds: "In a word, they 
willed one thing, to which all other things were 
subordinate, and made subservient, and therefore 
they accomplished it. The wedge will rend rocks, 
but its edge must be sharp and single ; if it be 
double, the wedge is bruised in pieces, and will 
rend nothing." It may, therefore, be affirmed 
that the greatest luminaries of the art world have 
shone most brightly under circumstances in keeping 
with their peaceful labours, it not being essential 
to success that men highly gifted for a particular 
art should have this strength of will unless there 
were immediate call for its exercise. 



THE ITALIAN SCHOOL 63 

Judging from the large number of bow-instrument 
makers in Italy, more particularly during the 
seventeenth century, we should conclude that the 
Italians must have been considered as far in advance 
of the makers of other nations, and that they mono- 
polised, in consequence, the chief part of the manu- 
facture. The city of Cremona became the seat 
of the trade, and the centre whence, as the 
manufacture developed itself, other less famous 
places maintained their industry. In this way there 
arose several distinct schools of a character marked 
and thoroughly Italian, but not attaining the high 
standard reached by the parent city. Notwith- 
standing the inferiority of the makers of Naples, 
Florence, and other homes of the art as compared 
with the Cremonese, they seem to have received 
a fair amount of patronage, the number of instru- 
ments manufactured in these places of lesser fame 
being considerable. 

To enable the reader to understand more 
readily the various types of Italian Violins, they 
may be classed as the outcome of five different 
schools. The first is that of Brescia, dating from 
about 1520 to 1620, which includes Gasparo da 
Salo, Maggini, and a few others of less note. The 
next, and most important school, was that of 
Cremona, dating from 1550 to 1760, or even 
later, and including the following makers : Andrea 
Amati, Girolamo Amati, Antonio Amati, Niccolo 
Amati, Girolamo Amati, son of Niccolo; Andrea 



64 THE VIOLIN 

Guarneri, Pietro Guarneri, Giuseppe Guarneri, the 
son of Andrea; Giuseppe Guarneri ("del Gesu"), the 
nephew of Andrea ; Antonio Stradivari, and Carlo 
Bergonzi. Several well-known makers have been 
omitted in the foregoing list simply because they 
were followers of those mentioned, and therefore 
cannot be credited with originality of design. The 
makers of Milan and Naples may be braced together 
as one school, under the name of Neapolitan, 
dating from 1680 to 1800. This school contains 
makers of good repute, viz., the members of the 
Grancino family, Carlo Testore, Paolo Testore, 
the Gagliano family, and Ferdinando Landolfi. 
The makers of Florence, Bologna, and Rome may 
likewise be classed together in a school that dates 
from 1680 to 1760, and includes the following 
names : Gabrielli, Anselmo, Tecchler, and Tononi. 
The Venetian school, dating from 1690 to 1764, 
has two very prominent members in Domenico 
Montagnana and Santo Seraphino : but the former 
maker may, not inappropriately, be numbered 
with those of Cremona, for he passed his early 
years in that city, and imbibed all the characteristics 
belonging to its chief makers. 

Upon glancing at this imposing list of makers, 
it is easy to understand that it must have been a 
lucrative trade which in those days gave support 
to so many ; and, further, that Italy, as compared 
with Germany, France, or England at that period, 
must have possessed, at least, more makers by 



THE ITALIAN SCHOOL 65 

two-thirds than either of those three countries. 
And this goes far to prove, moreover, that the 
Italian makers received extensive foreign patronage, 
their number being far in excess of that required 
to supply their own country's wants in the manu- 
facture of Violins. Roger North, in his " Memoirs 
of Musick," evidences the demand for Italian 
Violins in the days of James II. He remarks: 
" Most of the young nobility and gentry that 
have travelled into Italy affected to learn of 
Corelli, and brought home with them such favour 
for the Italian music, as hath given it possession 
of our Parnassus. And the best utensil of Apollo, 
the Violin, is so universally courted and sought 
after, to be had of the best sort, that some say 
England hath dispeopled Italy of Violins." We 
also read of William Corbett, a member of the 
King's band, having formed about the year 1710 
a "gallery of Cremonys and Stainers " during 
his residence in Rome. 

Brescia was the cradle of Italian Violin-making, 
for the few makers of bowed instruments (among 
whom were Gaspard Duiffoprugcar, who established 
himself at Bologna ; Dardelli, of Mantua ; Linarolli 
and Mailer, of Venice) cannot be counted among 
Violin-makers. The only maker, therefore, of the 
Violin of the earliest date, it remains to be said, 
was Gasparo da Salo, to whom belongs the credit 
of raising the manufacture of bowed instruments 
from a rude state to an art. There mav be 



66 THE VIOLIN 

something in common between the early works 
of Gasparo da Salo and Gaspard Duiffoprugcar, 
but the link that connects these two makers is very 
slight, and in the absence of further information 
respecting the latter as an actual maker of Violins, 
the credit of authorship must certainly belong to 
Gasparo da Salo. 

We are indebted to Brescia for the many grand 
Double-basses and Tenors that were made there by 
Gasparo da Salo and Maggini. These instruments 
formed the stepping-stones to Italian Violin-making, 
for it is evident that they were in use long before 
the first era of the Violin. The Brescian Violins 
have not the appearance of antiquity that is 
noticeable in the Double-basses or Tenors, and 
for one Brescian Violin there are ten Double- 
basses, a fact which goes far to prove that the 
latter was the principal instrument at that time. 

From Brescia came the masters who established 
the School of Cremona. The Amatis took the 
lead, their founder being Andrea Amati, after 
whom each one of the clan appears to have 
gained a march on his predecessor, until the grand 
masters of their art, Antonio Stradivari and 
Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu, advanced far beyond 
the reach of their fellow-makers or followers. The 
pupils of the Amati, Stradivari, and Guarneri 
settled in Milan, Florence, and other cities previ- 
ously mentioned as centres of Violin-making, 
and thus formed the distinct character or School 



THE ITALIAN SCHOOL 67 

belonging to each city. A close study of the 
various Schools shows that there is much in 
common among them. A visible individuality 
is found throughout the works of the Italian 
makers, which is not to be met with in anything 
approaching the same degree in the similar pro- 
ductions of other nations. Among the Italians, 
each artist appears to have at first implicitly obeyed 
the teaching of his master, afterwards, as his 
knowledge increased, striking out a path for him- 
self. To such important acts of self-reliance may 
be traced the absolute perfection to which the 
Italians at last attained. Not content with the 
production of instruments capable of producing 
the best tone, they strove to give them the highest 
finish, and were rewarded, possibly beyond their 
expectation. The individuality noticed as belong- 
ing in a high degree to Italian work is in many 
instances very remarkable. How characteristic 
the scroll and the sound-hole of each several 
maker! The work of master and pupil differs 
here in about the same degree as the handwriting 
of father and son, and often more. Although 
Stradivari was a pupil of Niccolo Amati, yet how 
marked is the difference between the scrolls and 
sound-holes of these two makers ; Carlo Bergonzi 
worked with Stradivari, yet the productions of 
these two are more easily known apart. A 
similarly well-defined originality is found, in a 
more or less degree, to pervade the entire series 



68 THE VIOLIN 

of Italian Violins, and forms a feature of much 
interest to the connoisseur. 

In closing my remarks upon the Italian School 
of Violin-making, I cannot withhold from the 
reader the concluding sentences of the Cremonese 
biographer, Vincenzo Lancetti, as contained in 
his manuscript relative to the makers of Cremona. 
He says : "I cannot help but deeply deplore the 
loss to my native city (where for two centuries 
the manufacture of stringed instruments formed 
an active and profitable trade) of the masterpieces 
of its renowned Violin-makers, together with the 
drawings, moulds, and patterns, the value of which 
would be inestimable to those practising the art. 
Is it not possible to find a citizen to do honour to 
himself and his city by securing the collection of 
instruments, models, and forms brought together 
by Count Cozio di Salabue, before the treasure 
be lost to Italy? I have the authority of Count 
Cozio to grant to such a patron every facility 
for the purchase and transfer of the collection, 
conditionally that the object be to resuscitate the 
art of Violin-making in Cremona, which desire 
alone prompted the Count in forming the collection." 
These interesting remarks were written in the year 
1823, with a view to their publication at the end 
of the account of Italian Violin-makers which 
Lancetti purposed publishing. As the work did 
not see the light, the appeal of the first writer 
on the subject of Italian Violins was never heard. 



THE ITALIAN SCHOOL 69 

Had it been, in all probability Cremona would 
at this moment have been in possession of the 
most remarkable collection of instruments and 
models ever brought together, and be maintaining 
in at least some measure the prestige belonging 
to its past in Violin-making. 



SECTION V 
The Italian Varnish 

A WORD or two must be said upon the-famous 
/~V varnish of 'the Italians, which has hitherto 
baffled all attempts to solve the mystery of its 
formation. Every instrument belonging to the 
school of Cremona has it, more or less, in all its 
marvellous beauty, and to these instruments the 
resolute investigator turns, promising himself the 
discovery of its constituent parts. The more its 
lustre penetrates his soul, the more determined 
become his efforts. As yet, however, all such 
praiseworthy researches have been futile, and the 
composition of the Cremonese varnish remains a 
secret lost to the world as much so as the glorious 
ruby lustre of Maestro Giorgio, and the blue so 
coveted by connoisseurs of china. Mr. Charles 
Reade truly says : " No wonder, then, that many 
Violin-makers have tried hard to discover the 
secret of this varnish : many chemists have given 
anxious days and nights to it. More than once, 
even in my time, hopes have run high, but only 

7 



THE ITALIAN VARNISH 71 

to fall again. Some have even cried ' Eureka ' 
to the public ; but the moment others looked at 
their discovery and compared it with the real 
thing, 

'Inextinguishable laughter shook the skies.' 

At last despair has succeeded to all that energetic 
study, and the varnish of Cremona is sullenly given 
up as a lost art." 

Declining, therefore, all speculation as to what 
the varnish is or what it is not, or any nostrums 
for its re-discovery, we will pass on at once to the 
description of the different Italian varnishes, which 
may be divided into four distinct classes, viz., the 
Brescian, Cremonese, Neapolitan, and Venetian. 
These varnishes are quite separable in one par- 
ticular, which is, the depth of their, colouring ; and 
yet three of them, the Brescian, Cremonese, and 
Venetian, have to all appearance a common basis. 
This agreement may be accounted for with some 
show of reason by the supposition that there must 
have been a depot in each city where the varnish 
was sold in an incomplete form, and that the depth 
of colour used, or even the means adopted for 
colouring, rested with the maker of the instrument. 
If we examine the Brescian varnish, we find an 
almost complete resemblance between the material 
of Gasparo da Salo and that of his coadjutors, the 
colouring only being different. Upon turning to 
the Cremonese, we find that Guarneri, Stradivari, 



72 THE VIOLIN 

Carlo Bergonzi, and a few others, used varnish 
having the same characteristics, but, again, different 
in shade ; possibly the method of. laying it upon the 
instrument was peculiar to each maker. Similar 
facts are observable in the Venetian specimens. 
The varnish of Naples, again, is of a totally 
different composition, and as it was chiefly in 
vogue after the Cremonese was lost, we may 
conclude that it was probably produced by the 
Neapolitan makers for their own need. 

If we reflect for a moment upon the extensive use 
which these makers made of the Cremonese varnish, 
it is reasonable to suppose that it was an ordinary 
commodity in their days, and that there was then 
no secret in the matter at all. To account for its 
sudden disappearance and total loss is, indeed, not 
easy. After 1760, or even at an earlier date, all 
trace of it is obliterated. The demand for it was 
certainly not so great as it had been, but quite 
sufficient to prevent the supply from dying out had 
it been possible. The problem of its sudden dis- 
appearance may, perhaps, be accounted for without 
overstepping the bounds of possibility, if we suppose 
that the varnish was composed of a particular gum 
quite common in those days, extensively used for 
other purposes besides the varnishing of Violins, 
and thereby caused to be a marketable article. 
Suddenly, we will suppose, the demand for its 
supply ceased, and the commercial world troubled 
no further about the matter. The natural con- 



THE ITALIAN VARNISH 73 

sequence would be non-production. It is well 
known that there are numerous instances of com- 
modities once in frequent supply and use, but now 
entirely obsolete and extinct. 

While, however, our attention has been mainly 
directed to the basis of the celebrated varnish, it 
must not be supposed that its colouring is of no 
importance. In this particular each maker had the 
opportunity of displaying his skill and judgment, 
and probably it was here, if anywhere, that the 
secret rested. The gist of the matter, then, is 
simply that the varnish was common to all, but the 
colouring and mode of application belonged solely 
to the maker, and hence the varied and independent 
appearance of each separate instrument. With 
regard, however, to the general question as to what 
the exact composition of the gum was or was not, 
I shall hazard no further speculation, and am 
profoundly conscious of the fact that my present 
guesses have gained no nearer approaches to the 
re-discovery of the buried treasure. 

A description, however, of the various Italian 
varnishes may not be inappropriate. The Brescian 
is mostly of a rich brown colour and soft texture, 
but not so clear as the Cremonese. The Cremonese 
is of various shades, the early instruments of the 
school being chiefly amber-coloured, afterwards 
deepening into a light red of charming appearance, 
later still into a rich brown of the Brescian type, 
though more transparent, and frequently broken up, 



74 THE VIOLIN 

while the earlier kinds are velvet-like. The 
Venetian is also of various shades, chiefly light red, 
and exceedingly transparent. The Neapolitan 
varnish (a generic term including that of Milan 
and a few other places) is very clear, and chiefly 
yellow in colour, but wanting the dainty softness 
of the Cremonese. It is quite impossible to give 
such a description of these varnishes as will enable 
the reader at once to recognise them ; the eye must 
undergo considerable exercise before it can dis- 
criminate the various qualities ; practice, however, 
makes it so sharp that often from a piece of varnish- 
ing the size of a shilling it will obtain evidence 
sufficient to decide upon the rank of the Violin. 

And here, before we dismiss the subject of the 
varnish, another interesting question occurs : What 
is its effect, apart from the beauty of its appearance, 
upon the efficiency of the instrument? The idea 
that the varnish of a Violin has some influence 
upon its tone has often been ridiculed, and we can 
quite understand that it must appear absurd to 
those who have not viewed the question in all its 
bearings. Much misconception has arisen from 
pushing this theory about the varnish either too far 
or not far enough. What seems sometimes to be 
implied by enthusiasts is, that the form of the 
instrument is of little importance provided the 
varnish is good, which amounts to saying that a 
common Violin may be made good by means of 
varnishing it. The absurdity of such a doctrine is 



THE ITALIAN VARNISH 75 

self-evident On the other hand, there are rival 
authorities who attach no importance to varnish in 
relation to tone. That the varnish does influence 
the tone there is strong proof, and to make this, 
plain to the reader should not be difficult. The 
finest varnishes are those of oil, and they require 
the utmost skill and patience in their use. They 
dry very slowly, and may be described as of a soft 
and yielding nature. The common varnish is 
known as spirit varnish ; it is easily used and dries 
rapidly, in consideration of which qualities it is 
generally adopted in these days of high pressure. 
It may be described as precisely the reverse of 
the oil varnish ; it is hard and unyielding. Now 
a Violin varnished with fine oil varnish, like all good 
things, takes time to mature, and will not bear 
forcing in any way. At first the instrument is 
somewhat muffled, as the pores of the wood have 
become impregnated with oil. This makes the 
instrument heavy both in weight and sound ; but 
as time rolls on the oil dries, leaving the wood 
mellowed and wrapped in an elastic covering which 
yields to the -tone of the instrument and imparts 
to it much of its own softness. We will now turn 
to spirit varnish. When this is used a diametri- 
cally opposite effect is produced. The Violin is, 
as it were, wrapped in glass, through which the 
sound passes, imbued with the characteristics of 
the varnish. The result is, that the resonance 
produced is metallic* and piercing, and well calcu- 



76 THE VIOLIN 

lated for common purposes ; if, however, richness 
of tone be required, spirit-varnished instruments 
cannot supply it. From these remarks the reader 
may gather some notion of the vexed question of 
varnish in relation to tone, and be left to form his 
own opinion. 

The chief features of the Italian School of Violin- 
makers having been noticed, it only remains to be 
said that the following list of makers is necessarily 
incomplete. This defect arises chiefly from old 
forgeries. Labels used as the trade marks of many 
deserving makers have from time to time been 
removed from their lawful instruments in order 
that others bearing a higher marketable value 
might be substituted. In the subjoined list will 
be found all the great names, and every eare has 
been taken to render it as complete as possible. 
Several names given are evidently German, most 
"of which belong to an early period, and are chiefly 
those in connection with the manufacture of Lutes 
and Viols in Italy. These are included in the 
Italian list, in order to show that many Germans 
were engaged in making stringed instruments in 
Italy, about the period when Tenor and Contralto 
Viols with four strings were manufactured there 
a circumstance worthy of note in connection with 
the history of Viol and Violin making in Italy, 
bearing in mind that four-string Viols were used 
in Germany when Italy used those having six 
strings. 



SECTION VI 
Italian Makers 

A BAT I, Giambattista, Modena, about 1775 
to 1793. 

ACEVO, Saluzzo. Reference is made in the " Bio- 
graphie Universelle des Musiciens " to this maker 
having been a pupil of Gioffredo Cappa, and M. 
Fetis mentions his having seen a Viol da Gamba 
dated 1693 of this make, which belonged to Marin 
Marais, the famous performer on the Viol. 1 

ALBANESI, Sebastiano, Cremona, 1720-1744. 
The pattern is bold and the model flat. Although 
made at Cremona, they do not properly belong to 
the school of that place, having the characteristics 
of Milanese work. The varnish is quite unlike that 
of Cremona. 

ALBANI, Paolo, Palermo, 1650-80. Is said 
to have been a pupil of Niccolo Amati. The 
pattern is broad and the work carefully executed. 

ALESSANDRO, named "II Veneziano," i6th cen- 
tury. 

ALETZIE, Paolo, Munich, 1720-36. He made 

1 There seems good reason to question the existence of 
such a person, at all events as a maker of Violins. EDITORS. 

77 



78 THE VIOLIN 

chiefly Tenors and Violoncellos, some of which are 
well-finished instruments. The varnish is inferior, 
both as regards quality and colour. The character- 
istics of this maker are German, and might be 
classed with that school. 

ALVANI, Cremona. Is said to have made instru- 
ments in imitation of those of Giuseppe Guarneri. 

AMATI, Andrea, Cremona. The date of birth is 
unknown. It is supposed to have occurred about 
1520. M. Fe*tis gave this date from evidence 
furnished by the list of instruments found in the 
possession of the banker Carlo* Carli, which be- 
longed to Count Cozio di Salabue. Mention is 
made of a Rebec, attributed to Andrea Amati, 
dated 1546. Upon reference to the MSS. of 
Lancetti, I find the following account of the Rebec : 
"In the collection of the said Count there exists 
also a Violin believed to be by Andrea Amati, with 
the label bearing the date 1546, which must have 
been strung with only three strings, and which at 
that epoch was called Rebec by the French. The 
father of Mantegazza altered the instrument into 
one of four strings, by changing the neck and 
scroll." From these remarks we gather that the 
authorship of this interesting Violin is doubtful. 
There is, however, some show of evidence to 
connect Andrea Amati with Rebecs and Geigen, 
in the notable fact that most of his Violins are small, 
their size being that known as three-quarter, which 
was, I am inclined to believe, about the size of 



ITALIAN MAKERS 79 

the instruments which the four-stringed Violin 
succeeded. As to the time when Andrea Amati 
worked, I am of opinion that it was a little later 
than has hitherto been stated. We have evidence 
of his being alive in the year 1611, from an entry 
recently discovered in the register of the parish 
in which Andrea Amati lived, to the effect that 
his second wife died on April 10, 1611, and 
that Andrea was then living. The discovery of 
this entry (together with many important and 
interesting ones to which I shall have occasion 
to refer) we owe to the patience and industry of 
Monsignor Gaetano Bazzi, Canon of the Cathedral 
of Cremona. 1 Andrea Amati claims attention not 
so much on account of his instruments, as from his 
being regarded as the founder of the school of 
Cremona. There is no direct evidence as to the 
name of the master from whom he learnt the art 
of making stringed instruments. If his work be 
carefully examined, it will appear that the only 
maker to whose style it can be said to bear any 
resemblance is Gasparo da Salo, and it is possible 
that the great Brescian may have instructed him in 
his art. It is unfortunate that there are no data for 
our guidance in the matter. These men often, like 
their brothers in Art, the painters of olden times, 
began to live when they were dead, and their 
history thus passed without record. Andrea Amati 

1 The extracts were published by Signer Piccolellis at 
Florence in 1886. 



8o THE VIOLIN 

may possibly have been self-taught, but there is 
much in favour of the view given above on this 
point. His early works are so Brescian in char- 
acter as to cause them to be numbered with the 
productions of that school. For a general designa- 
tion of the instruments of this maker the following 
notes may suffice. The. work is carefully executed. 
The model is high r and, in consequence, lacks 
power of tone ; but the Violins possess a charming 
sweetness. The sound-hole is inelegant, has not 
the decision of Gasparo da Salo, although belonging 
to his style, and is usually broad. His varnish may 
be described as deep golden, of good quality. His 
method of cutting his material was not uniform, 
but he seems to have had a preference for cutting 
his backs in slab form, according to the example set 
for the most part by the Brescian makers. The 
sides were also made in a similar manner, the wood 
used being both sycamore and that known to 
makers as pear-tree. The instruments of Andrea 
Amati are now very scarce. Among the famous 
instruments of this maker were twenty-four Violins 
(twelve large and twelve small pattern), six Tenors, 
and eight Basses, made for Charles IX., which were 
kept in the Chapel Royal, Versailles, until October, 
1790, when they disappeared. These were prob- 
ably the finest instruments by Andrea Amati. On 
the backs were painted the arms of France and 
other devices, with the motto, Pietate et Justitia. 
In the " Archives Curieuses de 1'Histoire de 



ITALIAN MAKERS 81 

France," one Nicolas Delinet, a member of the 
French King's band, appears to have purchased in 
1 572. a Cremona Violin for his Majesty, for which 
he paid about ten pounds a large sum, it must be 
confessed, when we think of its purchasing power in 
the sixteenth century. Mr. Sandys, who cites this 
curious entry, rightly conjectures it may have 
included incidental expenses. No mention is made 
of the maker of the Violin in question ; we find, 
however, that in the collection of instruments which 
belonged to Sir William Curtis there was a Violon- 
cello having the arms of France painted on the 
back, together with the motto above noticed. The 
date of the instrument was 1572. We may there- 
fore assume that the Violin purchased by Nicolas 
Delinet in the same year was the work of Andrea 
Amati, and belonged to the famous Charles IX. set. 

AMATI, Niccolo, Cremona, brother of Andrea. 
Very little is known of this maker or of his instru- 
ments. 

AMATI, Antonio and Girolamo, sons of Andrea 
Amati, Cremona. There does not exist certain 
evidence as to the date of the birth and death of 

Antonio Amati. We 

Antonius et Hieronymus Fr. Amati i r , / 

A / have information of 

Cremonen Andras fil. F. 

the dates on which 

his brother Girolamo died in extracts from parish 
registers ; also the date of his marriages, which took 
place in the year 1576, and on May 24, 1584. 
By his second wife, Girolamo had a family of nine 

G 



82 THE VIOLIN 

children ; the fifth child was Niccolo, who became 
the famous Violin-maker. The mother of Niccolo 
died of the plague on October 27, 1630, and 
her husband, Girolamo, died of the same disease 
six days later, viz., November 2, 1630, and 
was buried on the same day. Girolamo is 
described in the register as " Misser Hieronimo 
Amati detto il leutaro della vie di S. Faustino " 
(viz., maker to the Church). Vincenzo Lancetti 
states that " Count Cozio kept a register of all the 
instruments seen by him, from which it appeared 
that the earliest reliable date of the brothers Amati 
is 1577, and that they worked together until 1628 ; 
that Antonio survived Jerome and made instru- 
ments until after the year 1648 a fine Violin bear- 
ing the last-named date having been recently seen 
with the name of Antonio alone." This information 
serves in some measure to set at rest much of the 
uncertainty relative to the period when these 
makers lived. These skilful makers produced some 
of the most charming specimens of artistic work. 
To them we are indebted for the first form of the 
instrument known as " Amatese." The early 
efforts of the brothers Amati have many of the 
characteristics belonging to the work of their father 
Andrea ; their sound-hole is similar to his, and in 
keeping with the Brescian form, and the model 
which they at first adopted is higher than that of 
their later and better instruments. 

Although these makers placed their joint names 



ITALIAN MAKERS 83 

in their Violins, it must not be supposed that 
each bore a proportionate part of the manufacture 
in every case ; on the contrary, there are but 
few instances where such association is made 
manifest. The style of each was distinct, and 
one was immeasurably superior to the other. 
Antonio deviated but little from the teaching of 
his father. The sound-holes even of his latest 
instruments partake of the Brescian type, and 
the model is the only particular in which it 
may be said that a step in advance is traceable ; 
here he wisely adopted a flatter form. His work 
throughout, as regards finish, is excellent. 

Girolamo Amati possessed in a high degree 
the attributes of an artist. He was richly endowed 
with that rare power originality. It is in his 
instruments that we discover the form of sound- 
hole which Niccolo Amati improved, and, after 
him, the inimitable Stradivari perfected. Girolamo 
Amati ignored the pointed sound-hole and width 
in the middle portions observable in his prede- 
cessor's Violins, and designed a model of extremely 
elegant proportions. How graceful is the turn 
of the sound-hole at both the upper and lower 
sections ! With what nicety and daintiness are 
the outer lines made to point to the shapely 
curve ! Niccolo Amati certainly improved even 
upon Girolamo's achievements, but he did not 
add more grace ; and the essential difference 
between the instruments of the two is, that there 



84 THE VIOLIN 

is more vigour in the sound-hole of Niccolo than 
that of his father Girolamo. 

The purfling of the brothers Amati is very 
beautifully executed. The scrolls differ very much, 
and in the earlier instruments of these makers 
are of a type anterior to that of the bodies. 
Further, the varnish on the earlier specimens 
is deeper in colour than that found on the later 
ones, which have varnish of a beautiful orange 
tint, sparingly laid on, and throwing up the 
markings of the wood with much distinctness. 
The material used by these makers and the 
mode of cutting it also varies considerably. In 
some specimens we find that they used backs 
of the slab form ; in others, backs worked whole ; 
in others, backs divided into two segments. The 
belly-wood is in every case of the finest descrip- 
tion. The tone is far more powerful than that 
of the instruments of Andrea, and this increase 
of sound is obtained without any sacrifice of 
the richness of the quality. 

AMATI, Niccolo, Cremona, born December 3, 
1596, died April 12, 1684. Son of Girolamo 

Nicolaus Amatus Cremonen, Hieronymi Amati. It is grati- 
Fil. ac Antonij Nepos Fecit. 16- f y j ng in t h e not i ce 

of this famous Violin-maker to be able to supply 
dates of his birth, marriage, and death. Niccolo 
was christened on December 6, 1596. His 
marriage took place on May 23, 1645, an d 
it is interesting to record that his pupil Andrea 




Plate 5. 



CARLO BERGOXZI. 
Grand Pattern. 

(GEO. GUDGEON, ESQ.) 



[To face p. 84. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 85 

Guarneri witnessed the ceremony, and signed the 
register. The information recently supplied by 
Canon Bazzi of Cremona, relative to the pupils 
and workmen of Niccolo Amati, who were duly 
registered in the books of the parish of SS. 
Faustino and Giovita, is fraught with interest. 
It seems to carry us within the precincts, if not 
into the workshop, of the master. Andrea Guarneri 
heads the list in the year 1653, age twenty -seven, 
and married ; next comes Leopoldo Todesca, age 
twenty-eight ; and Francesco Mola, age twelve. 
In the following year Leopoldo Todesca appears 
to have been the only name registered as 
working with Amati. In the year 1666 we have 
the name Giorgio F raiser, age eighteen. In 
1668 no names of workmen seem to have been 
registered. In 1680 the name of Girolamo Segher 
appears, age thirty-four, and Bartolommeo 
Cristofori, age thirteen. In 1681 another name 
occurs, namely Giuseppe Stanza, a Venetian, 
age eighteen. In the following year the only 
name entered was that of Girolamo Segher, age 
thirty-six. Niccolo Amati was the greatest maker 
in his illustrious family, and the finest of his 
instruments are second only to those of his 
great pupil, Antonio Stradivari. His early efforts 
have all the marks of genius upon them, and 
clearly show that he had imbibed much of the 
taste of his father Girolamo. He continued for 
some time to follow the traditional pattern of 



86 THE VIOLIN 

the instruments, with the label of Antonius and 
Hieronymus Amati, and produced many Violins 
of small size, of which a large number are still 
extant. He appears to have laboured assiduously 
during these early years, with the view of making 
himself thoroughly acquainted with every portion 
of his art. We find several instances in which 
he has changed the chief principles in construc- 
tion (particularly such as relate to the arching and 
thicknesses), and thereby shown the intention which 
he had from the first of framing a new model entirely 
according to the dictates of his own fancy. The 
experienced eye may trace the successive steps 
taken in this direction by carefully examining the 
instruments dating from about 1645 downwards. 
Prior to this period, there is a peculiarly striking 
similarity in his work and model to that of his father, 
but after this date we can watch the gradual 
change of form and outline which culminated in 
the production of those exquisite works of the 
art of Violin-making known as "grand Amatis " 
a name which designates the grand proportions 
of the instruments of this later date. It may 
be said that the maker gained his great reputa- 
tion from these famous productions. They may 
be described as having an outline of extreme 
elegance, in the details of which the most artistic 
treatment is visible. The corners are drawn out 
to points of singular fineness, and this gives them 
an appearance of prominence which serves to 



ITALIAN MAKERS 87 

throw beauty into the entire work. The model 
is raised somewhat towards the centre, dipping 
rather suddenly from the feet of the bridge 
towards the outer edge, and forming a slight 
groove where the purfling is reached, but not 
the exaggerated scoop which is commonly seen 
in the instruments of the many copyists. This 
portion of the design has formed the subject of 
considerable discussion among the learned in the 
Violin world, the debatable points being the 
appearance of this peculiarity and its acoustic 
effect. As regards the former question, the 
writer of these pages feels convinced that the 
apparent irregularity is in perfect harmony with 
the general outline of the great Amati's instrument ; 
and it pleases the eye. From the acoustical 
point of view, it may be conceded that it does 
not tend to increase of power ; but, on the other 
hand/probably, the sweetness of tone so common 
to the instruments of Niccolo Amati must be set 
to its credit ; for, in proportion as the form is 
departed from, the sweetness is found to decrease. 
The sound-hole has all the character of those 
of the preceding Amati, together with increased 
boldness ; in fact, it is a repetition of that of 
Girolamo, with this exception. The sides are a 
shade deeper than those of the brothers Amati. 
The scroll is exquisitely cut. Its outline is 
perhaps a trifle contracted, and thus is robbed 
of the vigour which it would otherwise possess. 



88 THE VIOLIN 

From this circumstance it differs from the c/eneral 

O 

tenor of the body, which is certainly of broad 
conception. The maker would seem to have been 
aware of this defect, if we may judge from the 
difference of form given to his earlier scrolls, 
as compared with those of a later date, in which 
he seems to have attempted to secure increased 
boldness, as more in keeping with the character 
of the body of the instrument. It must be 
acknowledged, however, that these efforts did 
not carry him far enough. The surface of the 
scroll is usually inclined to flatness. The wood 
used by Niccolo Amati for his grand instruments 
is of splendid quality, both as regards acoustical 
requirements and beauty of appearance. The 
grain of some of his backs has a wave-like form 
of much beauty, others have markings of great 
regularity, giving to the instrument a highly- 
finished appearance. The bellies are of a soft 
silken nature, and usually of even grain. A few 
of them are of singular beauty, their grain being 
of a mottled character, which, within its trans- 
parent coat of varnish, flashes light here and there 
with singular force. The colour of the varnish 
varies in point of depth ; sometimes it is of a 
rich amber colour, at others reddish-brown, and 
in a few instances light golden-red. 

These, then, are the instruments which are 
so highly esteemed, and which form one of the 
chief links in the Violin family. The highest 



ITALIAN MAKERS 89 

praise must be conceded to the originator of a 
design which combines extreme elegance with 
utility ; and, simple as the result may appear, 
the successful construction of so graceful a whole 
must have been attended with rare ingenuity 
and persevering labour. 

Here, again, is evidence of the master mind, 
never resting, ever seeking to improve evidence, 
too, that mere elaboration of work was not the 
sole aim of the Cremonese makers. They de- 
signed and created as they worked, and their 
success, which no succeeding age has aspired to 
rival, entitles them to rank with the chief artists 
of the world. 

On the form of the instrument known as the 
"grand Amati " Stradivari exerted all the power 
of his early years ; and the fruits of his labours 
are, in point of finish, unsurpassed by any of his 
later works. Where Niccolo Amati failed, Stradi- 
vari conquered ; and particularly is this victory 
to be seen in the scrolls of his instruments during 
the first period, which are masterpieces in them- 
selves. How bold is the conception, how delicate 
the workmanship, what a marvel of perfection 
the sound-hole ! But as these Violins are noticed 
under the head of " Stradivari," it is unnecessary 
to enter into details here. Beside Stradivari, 
many makers of less importance followed the 
" grand Amati " pattern, among whom may be 
mentioned Jacobs, of Amsterdam, who takes 



90 THE VIOLIN 

a prominent place as a copyist. The truthfulness 
of these copies, as regards the chief portions of 
the instrument, is singularly striking, so much 
so, indeed, as to cause them to be frequently 
mistaken for originals by those who are not deeply 
versed in the matter. The points of failure 
in these imitations may be cited as the scroll 
and sound-hole. The former lacks ease, and 
seems to defy its author to hide his nationality. 
The scroll has ever proved the most troublesome 
portion of the Violin to the imitator. It is here, 
if anywhere, that he must drop the mask and 
show his individuality, and this is remarkably 
the case in the instance above mentioned. A 
further difference between Amati and Jacobs lies 
in the circumstance that the latter invariably 
used a purfling of whalebone. Another copyist 
of Amati was Grancino. As the varnish which 
he used was of a different nature from that of 
his original, his power of imitation must be 
considered to be inferior to that of some others. 
Numerous German makers, whose names will be 
found under the "German School," were also 
liege subjects of Amati, and copied him with 
much exactness ; so also, last, but not least, 
our own countrymen, Forster, Banks, and Samuel 
Gilkes. 

Lancetti, writing of Niccolo Amati in 1823, says: 
" Some masterpieces by him still remain in Italy, 
among which is the Violin dated 1668, in the 



ITALIAN MAKERS 91 

collection of Count Cozio. It is in perfect pre- 
servation, and for workmanship, quality, and power 
of tone far surpasses the instruments of his 
predecessors." The same writer remarks that 
" Niccolo Amati put his own name to his instru- 
ments about 1640." It was upon a Violoncello of 
this make that Signor Piatti played when he first 
appeared at the concert of the Philharmonic Society, 
on June 24, 1844. The instrument had been pre- 
sented to him by Liszt, and is now in the possession 
of the Rev. Canon Hudson. In an entry in the 
Cathedral Register at Cremona, the name of the 
wife of Niccolo Amati is given as Lucrezia Paliari. 
The meagreness of accounts of a documentary 
character in relation to the famous makers of 
Cremona naturally renders every contribution of 
the kind of some value. The following extract, 
taken from the State documents in connection with 
the Court of Modena, serves to indicate the degree 
of esteem in which the instruments of Niccolo 
Amati were held during his lifetime, in comparison 
with those of his contemporary and pupil, Francesco 
Ruggieri. Tomaso Antonio Vitali, the famous 
Violinist, who was the director of the Duke of 
Modena's Orchestra, addressed his patron to this 
effect : " Please your most Serene Highness, 
Tomaso Antonio Vitali, your highness's most 
humble servant, bought of Francesco Capilupi, 
through the agency of the Rev. Ignazio Paltrineri, 
for the price of twelve doublons, a Violin, and paid 



92 THE VIOLIN 

such price on account of its having the name inside 
of Niccolo Amati, a maker of great repute in his. 
profession. The petitioner has since found that 
this Violin has been wrongly named, as underneath 
the label is the signature of Francesco Ruggieri 
detto il Pero, a maker of less credit, whose Violins 
do not scarcely attain the price of three doublons." 1 
Vitali closes his letter with an appeal to the Duke 
for assistance to obtain redress. 

AMATI, Girolamo, Cremona, born 1649, third son 
of Niccolo. The labels which I have seen in a 
Violin and a Tenor bear the name " Hieronymus 
Amati," and describe the maker as the son of 
Niccolo. He was born on February 26, 1649, 
married in 1678. In 1736 he, together with 
his family, removed to another parish, as shown by 
the original extract from the books of the Cathedral 
at Cremona, sent by Canon Manfredini to Lancetti. 
Girolamo Amati died in the year 1740. There 
appears to have been some doubt as to whether 
Girolamo Amati, the son of Niccolo, made Violins, 
according to Lancetti. He says, " Those seen with 
his label, dated between 1703 and 1723, were 
ascribed by some to Sneider, of Pavia, and by 
others to J. B. Rogeri, of Brescia." In a letter of 
Count Cozio di Salabue to Lancetti, dated January 
3, 1823, he states that "in May, 1806, Signor Carlo 
Cozzoni gave an old Amati Violin for repair to the 

1 a Luigi F. Valdrighi Nomocheliurgografia," Modena, 
1 88-| . 



ITALIAN MAKERS 93 

Brothers Mantegazza, dealers and restorers of 
musical instruments, in Milan, and upon their 
removing the belly they were pleased to discover, 
written at the base of the neck, ' Revisto e coretto 
da me Girolamo figlio di Niccolo Amati, Cremona, 
1710.' " 

In some instances the instruments of this maker 
do not resemble those of Niccolo Amati, or indeed 
those of the Amati family. The sound-holes are 
straight, and the space between them is somewhat 
narrow. In others there is merit of a high order 
the pattern is large, broad between the sound-holes, 
and very flat in model, and resembling the form of 
Stradivari rather than that of Amati. These 
differences are accounted for by the fact- made 
known by Lancetti, that the tools and patterns of 
Niccolo Amati passed into the possession of Stradi- 
vari, and are therefore included with those now in the 
keeping of Count Cozio's descendant, the Marquis 
Dalla Valle. The varnish of Girolamo Amati 
shows signs of decadence ; in some instances, how- 
ever, we find it soft and transparent. The few 
which have this quality of varnish I am inclined to 
think were made in the time of Niccolo, since the 
instruments of a later date have a coating of varnish 
of an inferior kind. This maker as with the 
Bergonzis seems, therefore, to have been either 
ignorant of his parent's mode of making superior 
varnish, or was unable to obtain the same kind or 
quality of ingredients. With Girolamo closes the 



94 THE VIOLIN 

history of the family of the Amati as Violin- 
makers. Girolamo had a son, Niccolo Giuseppe, 
born in 1684, who removed with his father to 
another parish in 1736, as mentioned above, but 
he was not a maker of Violins. 

AMBROSI, Pietro, Rome and Brescia, about 1730. 

Average merit. The 

Petrus Ambrosi fecit Brixiae, 17 

workmanship re- 
sembles that of Balestrieri, as seen in the inferior 
instruments of that maker. 

ANSELMO, Pietro, Cremona, 1701. The instru- 
ments of this maker partake of the Ruggeri 
character. The varnish is rich in colour and of 
considerable body. Scarce. I have met with two 
excellent Violoncellos by this maker. Anselmo is 
said to have worked also in Venice. 

ANTONIAZZI, Gaetano, Cremona, 1860. The 
work is passable, but the form faulty. The sound- 
holes are not properly placed. 

ANTONIO OF BOLOGNA (Antonius Bononiensis). 
There is a Viol da Gamba by this maker at the 
Academy of Music, Bologna. 

ANTONIO, Ciciliano, an Italian maker of Viols. 
A specimen exists at the Academy of Bologna, 
without date. 

ASSALONE, Gasparo, Rome, i8th century. The 
model is high and the workmanship rough. Thin 
yellow varnish. 

BAGONI, Luigi (or Bajoni), Milan, from about 
1840. Was living in 1876. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 95 

BAGATELLA, Antonio, Padua, made both Violins 
and Violoncellos, a few of which have points of 
merit. He wrote a pamphlet in 1782 on a method 
of constructing Violins by means of a graduated 
perpendicular line similar to Wettengel's ; but no 
benefit has been derived from it. 

BAGATELLA, Pietro, Padua, is mentioned as a 
maker who worked about 1760. 

BALESTRIERI, Tommaso, middle of the i8th 
century. Said to have been a pupil of Stradivari, 

which is probable. 

Thomas Balestrieri Cremonensis r-p, . r 

Fecit Mantua,. Anno 17- The instruments of 

Balestrieri may be 

likened to those of Stradivari which were made 
during the last few years of his life, 1730-37. 
The form of both is similar, and the ruggedness 
observable in the latter instruments is found, but 
in a more marked degree, in those of Balestrieri. 
These remarks, however, must not be considered to 
suggest that comparison can fairly be made between 
these two makers in point of merit, but merely to 
point out a general rough resemblance in the 
character of their works. The absence of finish 
in the instruments of Tommaso Balestrieri is in a 
measure compensated by the presence of a style full 
of vigour. The wood which he used varies very 
much. A few Violins are handsome, but the 
majority are decidedly plain. The bellies were 
evidently selected with judgment, and have the 
necessary qualities for the production of good tone. 



96 THE VIOLIN 

The varnish seems to have been of two kinds, one 
resembling that of Guadagnini, the other softer and 
richer in colour. The tone may be described as 
large and very telling, and when the instrument 
has had much use there is a richness by no means 
common. It is singular that these instruments are 
more valued in Italy than they are either in England 
or France. 

BALESTRIERI, Pietro, Cremona, about 1725. 

BASSIANO, Rome. Lute-maker. 1666. 

BENEDETTI. See Rinalcli. 

BELLOSIO, Anselmo, Venice, i8th century. About 
1788. Similar to Santo Serafino in pattern, but 
the workmanship is inferior ; neat purfling ; rather 
opaque varnish. 

BENTE, Matteo, Brescia, latter part of the :6th 
century. M. Fetis mentions, in his " Biographic 
Universelle des Musiciens," a Lute by this maker, 
richly ornamented. 

BERGONZI, Carlo, Cremona, 1716-47. Pupil 
of Antonio Stradivari. That he was educated in 

Violin-making by the 

Anno 17 Carlo Bergonzi, fece r , 

in Cremona. greatest master of his 

art is evidenced be- 
yond doubt. In his instruments may be clearly 
traced the teachings of Stradivari. The model, 
the thicknesses, and the scroll, together with the 
general treatment, alj agree in betokening that 
master's influence. Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu 
here stands in strong contrast with Bergonzi. All 



ITALIAN MAKERS 97 

writers on the subject of Violins assume that 
Guarneri was instructed by Stradivari, a statement 
based upon no reasons (for none have ever been 
adduced), and apparently a mere repetition of some 
one's first guess or error. As before remarked, 
Carlo Bergonzi, in his work, and in the way in 
which he carries out his ideas, satisfactorily shows 
the source whence his early instructions were 
derived, and may be said to have inscribed the 
name of his great master, not in print, but in the 
entire body of every instrument which he made. 
This cannot be said of Giuseppe Guarneri. On 
the contrary, there is not a point throughout his 
work that can be said to bear any resemblance to 
the sign manual of Stradivari. As this interesting 
subject is considered at length in the notice of 
Giuseppe Guarneri, it is unnecessary to make 
further comment in this place. 

The instruments of Carlo Bergonzi are justly 
celebrated both for beauty of form and tone, and 
are rapidly gaining the appreciation of artistes and 
amateurs. Commercially, no instruments have 
risen more rapidly than those of this maker ; 
their value has continuously increased within re- 
cent years, more particularly in England, where 
their merits were earliest acknowledged a fact 
which certainly reflects much credit upon our 
connoisseurs. In France they had a good char- 
acter years ago, and have been gaining rapidly 
upon their old reputation, and now our neigh- 

H 



98 THE VIOLIN 

hours regard them with as much favour as 
we do. 

They possess tone of rare quality, are for the 
most part extremely handsome, and, last and 
most important of all, their massive construction 
has helped them, by fair usage and age, to be- 
come instruments of the first order. The model 
of Bergonzi's Violins is generally flat, and the 
outline of his early efforts is of the Stradivari 
type ; but later in life, he, in common with other 
great Italian makers, marked out a pattern for 
himself from which to construct. The essential 
difference between these two forms lies in the 
angularity of the latter. It would be very diffi- 
cult to describe accurately the several points of 
deviation unless the reader could handle the 
specimens for himself and have ocular demon- 
stration ; the upper portion from the curve of 
the centre bouts is increased, and, in con- 
sequence, the sound-holes are placed slightly 
lower than in the Stradivari model. Bergonzi 
was peculiar in this arrangement, and he seldom 
deviated from it. Again, increased breadth is 
given to the lower portion of the instrument, 
and in consequence the centre bouts are set 
at a greater angle than is customary. The sound- 
hole may be described as an adaptation of the 
characteristics of both Stradivari and Guarneri, 
inclining certainly more to those of the former. 
As a further peculiarity, it is to be noticed that 



ITALIAN MAKERS 99 

the sound-holes are set nearer the edge than is 
the case in the instruments of either of the 
makers named. Taken as a whole, Bergonzi's 
design is rich in artistic feeling, and one which 
he succeeded in treating with the utmost skill. 
Carlo Bergonzi furnishes us with another ex- 
ample of the extensive research with which the 
great Cremonese makers pursued their art, and a 
refutation of the common assertion that these 
men worked and formed by accident rather than 
by judgment. The differences of the two makers 
mentioned above, as regards form, are certainly 
too wide to be explained away as a mere acci- 
dent. It is further necessary to take into con- 
sideration the kind of tone belonging to these 
instruments respectively. If Bergonzi's instru- 
ments be compared with those of his master, 
Stradivari, or of Guarneri del Gesu, the appreciable 
difference to be found will amount to this, that 
in Bergonzi's instruments there is a just and 
exact combination of the qualities of both the 
other two makers named. Is it not, therefore, 
reasonable to conclude that Carlo Bergonzi was 
fully alive to the merits of both Stradivari and 
Guarneri, and deliberately set himself to construct 
a model that should embrace in a measure the 
chief characteristics of both of them ? 

The scroll is deserving of particular attention. 
It is quite in keeping with the body of the instru- 
ment, and has been cut with a decision of purpose 



zoo THE VIOLIN 

that could only have been possessed by a master. 
It is flatter than usual, if we trace it from the 
cheek towards the turn, and is strikingly bold. 
Here, again, is the portrait of the character of 
the maker. Although by a pupil of Antonio 
Stradivari, the scroll is thoroughly distinct from 
any known production of that maker it lacks his 
fine finish and exact proportion ; but, on the other 
hand, it has an originality about it which is quite 
refreshing. The prominent feature is the ear of 
the scroll, which being made to stand forth in 
bold relief, gives it a broad appearance when looked 
at from the front. 

The work of Bergonzi, as has been the case 
with many of his class, has been attributed to 
others. Many of his instruments are dubbed 
" Joseph Guarneri," a mistake in identification 
which arises chiefly from the form of the sound- 
hole at the upper and lower portions. There is 
little else that can be considered as bearing any 
resemblance whatever to the work of Guarneri, 
and even in this case the resemblance is very 
slight. Bergonzi's outline is totally different from 
that of Guarneri, and is so distinct and telling 
that it is sure to impress the eye of the experienced 
connoisseur when first seen. 

The varnish of Bergonzi is often fully as 
resplendent as that of Giuseppe Guarneri or 
Stradivari, and shows him to have been initiated 
in the mysteries of its manufacture. It is some- 



ITALIAN MAKERS 101 

times seen to be extremely thick, at other times 
but sparingly laid on ; often of a deep, rich red 
colour, sometimes of a pale red, and again, of rich 
amber, so that the variation of colour to be met 
with in Bergonzi's Violins is considerable. We 
must concede that his method of varnishing was 
scarcely so painstaking as that of his fellow- 
workers, if we judge from the clots here and there, 
particularly on the deep-coloured instruments ; but, 
nevertheless, now that age has toned down the 
varnish, the effect is good. 

Carlo Bergonzi lived next door to Stradivari, 
and I believe the house remained in the family 
until a few years since, when it was disposed of. 

Lancetti remarks : " From want of information, 
we have forgotten in the second volume " referring 
to his " Biographical Dictionary," part of which 
was printed in 1820 "to include an estimable 
maker named Carlo Bergonzi, who was pupil of 
Stradivari, and fellow-workman with his sons. 
From the list of names and dates collected by 
Count Cozio, it appears that Carlo Bergonzi 
worked by himself from 1719 to 1746. He used 
generally very fine foreign wood, and a varnish the 
quality of that of his master." In the collection 
of Count Cozio di Salabue, there were two Violins 
by Bergonzi, dated 1731 and 1733, and a Violon- 
cello, 1746. We have in this country two 
remarkable Violoncellos of this maker. The per- 
fect and unique Double Bass which Vuillaume 



102 THE VIOLIN 

purchased of the executors of Luigi Tarisio is 
now in the possession of the family of the late 
Mr. J. M. Sears, of Boston, U.S. 

BERGONZI, Michel Angelo, Cremona, 1730-60. 

Son of Carlo. The 

Michael Angelo Bergonzi Figlio di r i 

Carlo f ece in Cremona 1'Anno 17- P attem f hlS lnstru - 

ments is somewhat 

varied. Many are large, and others under-sized. 
The varnish is hard, and distinct from that 
associated with Cremonese instruments. 

BERGONZI, Niccolo, Cremona. Son of the above. 
He made a great number of Violins of similar 

form to those of his 

Nicolaus Bergonzi Cremonensis r , i <-pi j 

facieba\Annoi 7 - fathen The W d 

which he selected 

was of a close nature and hard appearance. The 
varnish is not equal to that of Carlo ; it is thin 
and cold-looking. The workmanship is very good, 
being often highly finished, but yet wanting in 
character. The scroll is cramped, and scarcely 
of the Cremonese type. Lancetti mentions a 
Tenor by this maker, dated 1781. 

In the correspondence which passed between the 
grandson of Antonio Stradivari and the agents of 
Count Cozio (which is given in these pages), 
reference is made to some of the moulds of the 

great maker being in the keeping of Bergonzi, 

they having been lent to him, the writer saying 
that he would obtain them and put them with 
the other patterns, which appears to have been 




J. B. GUADAGXIXI. 




Plate 6. 



[To face p. 102. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 103 

done. These moulds were doubtless lent to 
Michel Angelo Bergonzi, and were used by 
Niccolo as well as his father, which accounts for 
the form of their instruments being varied. 

BERGONZI, Zosimo, Cremona. Brother of 
Niccolo. 

BERGONZI, Carlo, Cremona, about 1780-1820. 
Son of Michel Angelo. He made a few Violins, 
large Stradivarius form, sound-holes straight 
and inelegant. 

BERGONZI, Benedetto, Cremona, died in 1840. 
Tarisio learned little points of interest concerning 
Stradivari and his contemporaries from Benedetto 
Bergonzi. 

BERTASSI, Ambrogio, Piadena (near Cremona), 
about 1730. 

BERTOLOTTI, Caspar di. See Caspar da Salo. 

BIANCHI, Niccolo, Genoa and Nice. Worked 
until about 1875. 

BIMBI, Bartolommeo, Siena, 1753-69. High- 
built, small pattern, orange-yellow varnish. 

BODIO, G. B., Venice, about 1832. Good work- 
manship ; oil varnish, wide purfling. 

BORELLI, Andrea, Parma, about 1735. His 
instruments are little known ; they resemble those 
of Giuseppe Guadagnini. 

BRENSIO, Girolamo (BRENSIUS, Hieronymus), 
Bologna. Reference has been made to the 
Viols of this maker in the first section of this 
work. 



104 THE VIOLIN 

BRESCIA, Da, Battista. A Pochette or Kit of 
this maker is at the Academy of Music, Bologna, 
signed " Baptista Bressano " ; the period assigned 
to it is the end of the i5th century. 

BROSCHI, Carlo, Parma. 

Carlo Broschi in Parma, fecit 1732. 

BUSSETO, Giovanni M., Cremona, 1540-80. 
Maker of Viols. M. Fetis mentions, in his 
" Biographic des Musiciens," that Busseto derived 
his name from Busseto, a borough in the Duchy 
of Parma, where he was born. He also mentions 
a Viol of this maker, dated 1580, which was 
found at Milan in 1792. 

CALCAGNI, Bernardo, Genoa, about 1740. Neat 

workmanship, small 

Bernardus Calcanius fecit Genuae 11 r\.. , i 

anno 17- SCroll > flat m de1 ' 

well-cut sound-holes, 
Stradivari pattern, orange-red varnish. 

CALVAROLA, Bartolommeo, Bergamo, about 1753. 
The work is neatly executed. These instruments 
are somewhat like those of Ruggeri in form. The 
scroll is weak, and ill-proportioned. 

CAMILLI, Camillo, Mantua, 17 . The form 

partakes of that of 

Camillas Camilli Fecit Mantua 17 * 

Stradivari ; wood 

usually of excellent quality. The sound-hole is 
rather wide and short. The varnish resembles 
that of Landolfi, but is less brilliant. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 105 

CAPPA, Gioffredo, Cremona, 1644-1717. The 

dates of birth and death were ascertained by Dr. 

TOFREDVS CAPPA FECIT Orazio Roggiero, a 

SALVTIIS ANNO 16- lawyer of Saluzzo, 

whose researches set at rest many doubts and 
speculations as to this excellent maker and his 
period of activity. He was formerly held to be 
a pupil of the brothers Amati, but the assumption, 
having regard to the date of birth, is untenable. 

The greater number of his productions consist 
of works of high merit. Their likeness to the in- 
struments of the Amati is in some instances pecu- 
liarly striking, but in others there is a marked 
dissimilarity. Particularly is this the case in the 
form of the sound-hole and scroll. The sound- 
hole is sometimes large, and quite out of keeping 
with the elegant outline of Amati. The points 
of difference may be summed up as follows : 
the sound-hole is larger, and more obliquely set 
in the instrument ; the upper portion of the body 
has a more contracted appearance ; the head, 
as is the case with most makers, differs most, 
and, in this instance, in no way resembles 
Amati. 

There are few specimens of Cappa that bear 
their original labels ; most of them are counter- 
feit "Amatis," and hence the great confusion 
which has arisen concerning their parentage. 
Lancetti says : " Foreign professors and amateurs, 
and particularly the English though connoisseurs 



io6 THE VIOLIN 

of the good and the beautiful in buying the 
instruments of Cappa thought they had acquired 
those of Amati, the outline and character of the 
varnish and the quality of the tone resembling 
in some measure the instruments of the Brothers 
Amati. It is, however, reserved to a few Italian 
connoisseurs to distinguish them. Those of large 
pattern, and even of medium size, that have not 
been injured by unskilful restorers, are scarce, 
and realise high prices." These remarks, sug- 
gested many years since, by so able a connoisseur 
as Count Cozio, possess a peculiar interest, and 
cannot fail to interest the reader. As Lancetti 
remarks, they are of two patterns, one larger than 
the other. The large one is, of course, the more 
valuable ; it is flatter, and altogether better 
finished. The Violoncellos of Cappa are among 
the best of the second-class Italian instruments, 
and are well worthy the attention of the pro- 
fessor and amateur. The varnish is frequently 
of very rich quality, its colour resembling that 
of Amati in many instances. 

CARCASSI, Francesco, Florence, about 1758. 

CARCASSI, Lorenzo, about 1738. 

CARCASSI, Tomaso, worked in partnership with 
Lorenzo, but also alone, according to labels. There 
were several makers of this name. 

CASINI, Antonio, Modena. 

Antonius Casini, fecit Mutine anno 1680. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 107 

CASTAGNERI, Andrea, Paris, about 1735. This 

Italian maker appears 

Andrea Castagneri, nell Palazzo i 11- 

tO haVG S6ttled m 



di Saassone Pariggi, I7 - 

Paris. I have seen 

a Violin by Castagneri, date 1735 ; flat model, 
bold outline, and varnish of good quality. 

CASTELLANI, Pietro, Florence, died about 1820. 

CASTELLANI, Luigi, Florence, died 1884. 

CASTRO, Venice, 1680-1720. The wood is of 
good figure generally. The outline is defective ; 
the middle bouts are too long to be propor- 
tionate. Sound-hole roughly worked. Varnish 
red, the quality of which is scarcely up to the 
Venetian standard. 

CATENAR, Enrico, Turin, about 1671. 

Henricus Catenar, fecit Taurini anno 167 

CELIONIATI, Gian Francesco, Turin, about 1734. 

Appears to have 

Joannes FranciscusCeloniatus, . d h f f 
fecit Taurini, anno 17 

Amati. Yellow 

varnish, good workmanship. 

CERIN, Marco Antonio, Venice, end of the 
eighteenth century. Signed himself as a pupil 
of Belosio. 



Marcus Antonius Cerin, alumnus Anselmi Belosii, fecit 
Venetiag, 17 



CERUTI, Giovanni Battista, Cremona, 1755- 



io8 THE VIOLIN 

1817. Ceruti made a large number of Violins 

and Violoncellos of 

Jo. Baptista Ceruti Cremonensis i na ttern of Amati 
fecit Cremonaj an 18- 

He appears to have 

been a prolific workman, his instruments number- 
ing, it is said, about five hundred. His favourite 
model was the large Amati. Giovanni Ceruti 
succeeded to the business of Lorenzo Storioni 
in 1790, in the Via dei Coltellai, near the Piazza. 
St. Domenico. 

CERUTI, Giuseppe, son of Giovanni, Cremona, 
1787-1860. Was a maker and restorer of in- 
struments. He is said to have exhibited, at the 
Paris and other exhibitions, Violins of good 
quality. He died at Mantua, in 1860. 

CERUTI, Enrico, son of Giuseppe, Cremona, 
born in 1808, died on October 30, 1883. 
Enrico Ceruti is the last of the long line of 
Cremonese Violin-makers ; there is, in conse- 
quence, a peculiar interest attached to him. In- 
dependent of this, however, he is deserving of 
special notice from his having been the recipient 
of the traditional history attending the makers 
of Cremona, from Amati to Stradivari and 
Bergonzi, and from Bergonzi to Storioni and 
Ceruti. He was acquainted with Luigi Tarisio 
and with Vuillaume, to whom he gave many 
interesting particulars relative to the great makers 
of his native city. The instruments of Enrico 
Ceruti are much valued by Italian orchestral 



ITALIAN MAKERS 109 

players. They are said to number about three 
hundred and sixty-five, among which are several 
Violoncellos. He exhibited at the London Ex- 
hibition of 1862, and at other exhibitions. The 
last Violin he made was shown at the Milan 
Exhibition, 1881. 

CRISTOFORI, Bartolommeo, Padua and Florence, 
1667-1731. Apprenticed to Niccolo Amati. Is 
best known as the inventor of the " hammer 
system," and, therefore, the father of the modern 
pianoforte. Bow instruments of his make are rare, 
but authentic examples are in every way excellent. 
A fine Double Bass, dated 1715, is in the museum 
of the Musical Academy in Florence. Violoncellos 
and other instruments are known, and it is to be 
regretted that so few specimens are to be met 
with. 

CIRCAPA, Tommaso, Naples, about 1730. 

Cocco, Cristoforo, Venice, 1654. A Lute-maker. 
The Museum of the Paris Conservatoire Nationale 
de Musique contains a specimen of this make, 
which is described in M. Gustave Chouquet's 
catalogue of the collection. 

CONTRERAS, Joseph, Madrid, 1745-80. This 
being one of the few Spanish makers, his name 
is placed with the Italian, the number of the 
Spanish being insufficient for a separate list. 
The model of this maker is very good and the 
workmanship superior. He probably lived in 
Italy during his early life, the style being Italian. 



no THE VIOLIN 

He was born in Granada, and was called the 
Spanish Stradivarius. He died about 1780, and 
is said to have been seventy years of age. 
CORDANO, Jacopo Filippo, Genoa, about 1774. 

Jacobus Philipus Cordanus, fecit Genuae anno sal. 1774. 

CORNA, Dalla, Brescia, early maker of Viols, 
about 1530. 

COSTA, Pietro Antonio dalla, Venice and Treviso 
The label he used is curious. He copied the 

Brothers Amati with 

Petrus Antonius a Costa, fecit m u skilful ness 
ad similitudinem illorum quos 

fecerunt Antonius & Hieronymus The sound-holes are 
Fratres Amati Cremonenses Filii ri .1 r 4.U 

Andne. Tarvisii, 1757. llke th S6 f the 

early instruments of 

the Amati ; the varnish is golden in colour and 
excellent in quality ; the scroll, as usual with all 
imitations, is a weak feature, but does not lack 
originality. 

DARDELLI, Pietro, Mantua, about 1500. Is de- 
scribed as a maker of Lutes and Viols. M. 
Fe"tis relates, in his " Biographic des Musiciens," 
that the painter Richard, of Lyons, possessed 
about the year 1807 a beautiful Lute by this 
maker, which was made for the Duchess of 
Mantua. The instrument is described as richly 
inlaid with ebony, ivory, and silver, dated 1497, 
and having the name " Padre Dardelli." On the 
belly the Mantuan arms are represented. M. 



ITALIAN MAKERS in 

Fe"tis was unable to discover any tidings of this 
interesting instrument after the death of Richard. 
Dardelli was a Franciscan monk at Mantua, and 
occupied himself with making musical instruments 
and inlaying them. Work of any kind executed 
under such circumstances is rarely found to be 
other than artistic. 

DESPINE, Alexander, Turin, nineteenth century. 
A very good maker ; worked with Pressenda, 
whose labels his instruments sometimes bear. 

DIEFFOPRUCHAR, Magno, Venice, 1612. Lute- 
maker. An instrument of this make is at the 
Academy of Music, Bologna. M. Engel remarks, 1 
" There can be no doubt that we have here the 
Italianised name of the German Magnus Tieffen- 
brucker, who lived in Italy." There appears 
to be a connection between these Venetian Lute- 
makers of this name and Duiffoprugcar of the 
sixteenth century. 

DOMINICELLI, Ferrara, said to have worked 
about 1 700. 

DUIFFOPRUGCAR, Caspar, Bologna. This famous 
maker of Viols is said to have settled in Bologna 
in the early part of the sixteenth century. He 
appears to have obtained much renown as an 
inlayer of musical instruments, and it is stated 
that Francis I., upon the occasion of his visit 
to Italy in 1515, prevailed upon the Viol-maker 

1 " Musical Myths and Facts," 1876. 



ii2 THE VIOLIN 

to settle in France. The name of Duiffoprugcar 
has been made familiar to us, not so much on 
account of his merits as a Viol-maker, but almost 
wholly on account of his having been repre- 
sented as the first maker of the Violin tuned 
in fifths, and the representation having been sup- 
ported by the production of three Violins signed 
and dated 1511, 1517, 1519. I saw, about the 
year 1877, one of these, and was informed by 
the owner that the others were almost identical. 
The instrument bore distinct evidence of its being 
a modern French imitation, or rather an ingenious 
creation evolved from a myth, which in all prob- 
ability had its origin in France. Duiffoprugcar 
was unquestionably an artist of a high order, but 
his abilities appear to have been chiefly directed 
to the art of wood- inlay ing, rather than to the 
making of stringed instruments. He made Viols 
da Gamba, and he may have made smaller Viols, 
though I am not aware of any being in existence ; 
but there is no evidence whatever to show that 
he made Violins. 

FARINATO, Paolo, Venice, 1695-1725. 

FICKER, Johann Christian, Cremona, middle of 
the 1 8th century. Although dating from Cremona, 
has nothing in common with Cremonese 
work. 

FICKER, Johann Gottlieb, Cremona, 1788. 

FIORILLO, Giovanni, Ferrara, 1780. The style 
is a mixture of German and Italian, the former 



ITALIAN MAKERS 113 

preponderating. The sound-hole is an imitation 
of that of Stainer. His Violoncellos are among 
his best instruments. 

FIORINO, Fiorenzi, Bologna, about 1685. 

FREI, Hans, Bologna, 1597. Lute and Viol- 
maker. There is an instrument of this make at 
the Bologna Academy of Music. It is probable 
there was a family connection between Hans Frey, 
of Nuremberg, and this maker. 

GABRIELLI, Giovanni Battista, Florence, about 
the middle of the i8th century. The instruments 
of Gabrielli are now becoming better known and 

appreciated. They 

Gio Battista Gabrielli, fece in bear eyident marks 
Firenze, 17 

of having been made 
Johanes Baptista de Gabriellis, wirfl extreme 



Florentmus fecit 1742. 

The model, unfor- 

tunately, is often not all that could be desired, 
being too rounded. When this is not the case, 
the tone is excellent. The wood is mostly very 
handsome, and the sides and backs evenly marked. 
The varnish is wanting in mellowness, but is very 
transparent ; its colour is chiefly yellow. The 
Tenors and Violoncellos are superior to the Violins. 
The scroll is neatly cut, but weak in design. The 
letters G. B. G. were often branded on the 
instruments of Gabrielli. 

GABRIELLI. Other makers of this name (Antonio, 
Bartolommeo, Cristoforo) appear to have dated from 
Florence. 



u 4 THE VIOLIN 

GAFFINO, Giuseppe, Paris, about 1755. Pupil 
of Castagneri. 

GAGLIANO, Alessandro, Naples, 1695-1730. A 
pupil of Antonio Stradivari. The Gagliano family 

played no unimpor- 

Alexandras Gagliano Alumnus . h 

Stradivari fecit Neapoh anno 1725. 

of Italian Violin- 
making. It commences with Alessandro, who 
imitated his master as regards the form which 
he gave to his instruments. Alessandro Gagliano, 
upon leaving the workshop of Stradivari, removed 
to Naples, a city which afforded him greater scope 
for the exercise of his talents than Cremona. 
With others, he felt that his chance of success 
was very small if he remained on ground occu- 
pied by the greatest luminaries of his art. His 
labours at Naples seem to have been so well 
rewarded that he caused his sons to follow his 
calling. There is evidence of their having en- 
joyed what may be termed a monopoly of the 
Violin manufacture in and around Naples, there 
being no record of another maker of importance 
in that locality at the same period. To these 
makers we are indebted for the Neapolitan 
School. Although in its productions we miss the 
lustrous varnish and handsome wood of Cremona, 
Naples has furnished us with many excellent 
instruments. 

The works of Alessandro Gagliano are mostly 
of large pattern and flat model. If we compare 



ITALIAN MAKERS 115 

them with those of his master, the resemblance 
is not so great as might be expected, if it be 
remembered that they are copies, and not original 
works. The sound-holes are broader and more 
perpendicular than those of Stradivari. The scroll 
is diminutive, and the turn much contracted and 
of a somewhat mean appearance. The workman- 
ship of the scroll is roughly executed, and points 
to the conclusion that Alessandro Gagliano was 
not gifted with the power of head-cutting. The 
character of Gagliano's Violins frequently reminds 
us of those by Stradivari made between 1725 
and I73O. 1 

The wood used for the backs was generally of 
a tough nature ; the back and sides are often 
marked with a broad curl. The bellies are of 
wide and even grain, and very resonant. The 
varnish is quite distinct from that of Cremona ; 
it is very transparent, and of various shades, chiefly 
yellow. 

GAGLIANO, Gennaro, Naples, 1720 to about 1758 ; 

finely finished. Well- 

Januarius Gagliano, filius Alexandri h j j 

fecit Neap, 1732 

cellent form. He 

sometimes wrote his name in pencil on the inside 
of the belly. 

GAGLIANO, Niccolo, Naples, son of Alessandro. 
His Violins and Violoncellos were made with care, 
and show that he possessed some amount of 

1 Some of his Basses are of exceptionally fine workmanship. 



ji6 THE VIOLIN 

originality. They are not after the pattern of 

his father's instru- 

Nicolaus Gagliano filius Alexandri 



agano us exanr ments Th 

fecit Neap 17 * 

narrower, and simi- 

lar to those earlier works of Stradivari which come 
between the true "Amatese" and the long form. 
The varnish is of a deeper colour than that of 
Alessandro, and its quality is not inferior. The 
scroll is, in some cases, well formed, in others 
somewhat grotesque. The model is high. They 
are sometimes seen ornamented round the purfling 
with ebony, diamond and lozenge shape. 

GAGLIANO, Giovanni Battista, about 1730. 

GAGLIANO, Ferdinando, Naples, son of Niccolo. 

His instruments are 

Ferdinandu^GagHano^fiHus Nicolai u s u a } }y exce llently 

made, and have a 

varnish of a warmer tint than is met with on 
the instruments of the Gagliani family. 

GAGLIANO, Giuseppe, Naples, 1780. Son of 
Ferdinando. 

GAGLIANO, Giovanni, 



GAGLIANO, Antonio, 



Naples. These makers 



GAGLIANO, Raffaele, 
bring the family down to a very recent date as 
residents in Naples. The merit belonging to 
them is of the slightest kind. Some of our 
English provincial makers have shown themselves 
superior. 

GALBUSERA, C. A., Milan, 1832-47. This 



ITALIAN MAKERS 117 

maker appears to have attracted attention in Italy. 
In a little volume entitled " L' Italic Iiconomique," 
1847, he is mentioned as a maker who rivals 
Vuillaume. I am not acquainted with his instru- 
ments. Mention is made of his having- made 

o 

Violins without corners, and that he applied to 
the wood a preparation for the purpose of ex- 
tracting the resinous particles from it. The 
adoption of such means of forcing on maturity 
makes it unlikely that he made instruments worthy 
of notice. 

GARANI, Michel Angelo, Bologna, 1681-1720. 
His Tenors in particular are well-made instru- 
ments. 

GARANI, Niccolo, Naples. Gagliano type of 
instrument, usually plain wood. 

GASPARO DA SAL6 (see Salo). 

GATINARI, Francesco, Turin, about 1700. 

GENNARO, Giacomo. Worked at Cremona, in 
the shop of Niccolo Amati, about 1641. His name 
is mentioned in the parish registers in Cremona 
as being employed by Amati. 

GERONI, Domenico, Ostiano (Province of Brescia), 
dated 1817. 

GHIDINI, Carlo, Parma, about 1746. 

GIBERTINI, Antonio, Parma, about 1830. Stradi- 
vari model, excellent work, deep rose-coloured 
varnish. This maker was at times employed by 
Paganini to repair or regulate his Violins. 

GIORGI, Niccolo, Turin, about 1760. 



n8 THE VIOLIN 

GOBETTI, Francesco (sometimes called Gobit], 
Venice, 1690-1715. This is one of the little- 
known makers, a fact 

Franciscus Gobetti fecit i i u 

Venetiis 1705. whlch "^ be aUr '- 

buted to the practice, 

common some years ago, of removing the original 
label of an instrument and substituting another, 
bearing a name more likely from its familiarity to 
command attention. 

When we see such Violins bearing the stamp of 
genius upon them, and reflecting much credit on the 
maker, the lovers of the instrument cannot but 
regret that the author should have been eclipsed, 
and deprived of his just praise. 

Had the name of Gobetti been permitted to 
associate itself with the instruments into which 
it was originally placed, they would have been 
as highly valued as any belonging to the Venetian 
school, with the single exception of Domenico 
Montagnana. The admirers of that finished maker, 
Santo Serafino, may perhaps dispute the justice of 
this observation ; but, having carefully weighed the 
merits of both Serafino and Gobetti, I have no 
hesitation in awarding to the latter the foremost 
place. Gobetti's style is superior, being more 
Cremonese than Venetian ; and further, his model 
is preferable. 

Gobetti has been considered to have been a 
pupil of Antonio Stradivari, possibly with some 
reason, for his instruments bear a similarity to 



ITALIAN MAKERS 119 

the early works of the great master. The in- 
struments of this maker, like those of many others 
of his class, have passed for the works of Ruggeri, 
and sometimes of Amati. There is a slight like- 
ness about the sound-hole to the work of Fran- 
cesco Ruggeri ; but to the skilled in such matters, 
no feature interchangeable with Amati can be 
detected. 

The workmanship is uniformly neat in execu- 
tion ; the scroll is the least successful part, being 
weak in character as compared with the body. 
The varnish is equal to any belonging to the 
Venetian school, and its beauty is second only to 
tjiat of Cremona ; its colour is generally a pale 
red, of considerable transparency. The wood is 
most handsome. These Venetians were not a 
little happy in selecting beautiful wood ; in fact, 
it is scarcely possible to discover a single 
Venetian instrument the wood of which is 
plain. The tone of Gobetti's work is round, 
without great power ; but the quality is singularly 
sweet. 

GOFRILLER, Matteo, Venice, about 1700-1735. 
The workmanship is often good, and the wood of 
fine quality. The style is somewhat different from 
that we are accustomed to associate with Italy. 
The tone and character of the varnish are generally 
excellent. 

GOFRILLER, Francesco, Venice. Brother of the 
above, with whom he worked. 



120 THE VIOLIN 

GRAGNANI, Antonio, Leghorn. Usually branded 

his initials below the 

Antonius Gragnani, fecit i A T , 

Liburni, anno 1^80. tail-pin. Varnish 

somewhat hard ; ordi- 
nary wood. The tone is often of good quality. 

GRANCINO, Paolo, Milan, 1665-92. Pupil of 
Niccol6 Amati. The Grancino family, as makers 
of Violins, commence with this maker, and occupy 
a similar position, as followers of the Amati 
pattern, to that of the Gagliani as imitators of 
Stradivari. Paolo Grancino was pupil of Niccolo 
Amati. His early works bear the stamp of the 
mere copyist ; later on the borrowed plumes 
are less apparent, the dictates of his own fancy are 
discoverable, but never to such an extent as to 
permit him to be classed with Stradivari, Bergonzi, 
and Guarneri, as striking out into entirely untrodden 
paths. 

His Violoncellos are particularly fine instruments ; 
his Tenors also are worthy of notice. The wood 
he used was varied, but is, for the most part, plain. 
It is curious to observe how various centres of 
Violin-making ran upon different qualities of wood. 
In Venice the handsomest wood was used, in Milan 
and Naples the plainest. The commercial im- 
portance of Venice would, of course, draw to it 
the largest selection of wood, and thus permit the 
second and third rate maker to use it, and at the 
same rate, probably, as a less handsome material 
would cost in cities farther removed. The scroll 



ITALIAN MAKERS 121 

of Paolo Grancino has a very decisive character ; 
it is quite distinct from that of the Amati. From 
the ear of the scroll the turn is rapidly made, and 
has an elongated appearance. 

GRANCINO, Giovanni, Milan, 1694-1720. Son 
of Paolo. The workmanship is smooth, and the 

form good. The ma- 

Giovan Grancino in Contrada ter } a l Q f ft is instru- 
larga di Milano al segno 

deiia Corona 16 ments is of a better 

nature than that used 

by his father. The model is slightly flatter. The 
tone is powerful. Varnish mostly yellow. 

GRANCINO, Giovanni Battista, Milan, 1690. Son 
of Giovanni mentioned above. Similar charac- 
teristics. 

GRANCINO, Francesco. Son of Giovanni Battista. 
Here we have the same falling off as in the case 
of the Gagliani, a family beginning with artists, and 
ending with common workmen. 

GRULLI, Pietro, Cremona. Contemporary. 
GUADAGNINI, Lorenzo, Cremona, 1695 to about 

1740. No matter to 

Laurentius Guadagnini which of the Guadag- 

Cremonae Alumnus Stradivari . . , 

fecit Anno Domini 17 nmi the instrument 

may owe its origin, 

if it bears the name, importance is attached to it, 
often without due regard to the merits of the 
particular specimen. The later members of the 
family have thus received attention measured by 
the excellence of the work of their forefathers. 



122 THE VIOLIN 

That this should be so, to a certain extent, can 
scarcely excite surprise, nor is it singular in the 
Italian branch of the art. The great makers of 
the Guadagnini family were Lorenzo and Giovanni 
Battista. The former has been considered the 
chief maker ; but if the merits of each be duly 
weighed, they will be found to be nearly equal. 
It is probable that Lorenzo has been looked 
upon as the principal maker from the association 
of his name with that of Antonio Stradivari, 
a fact which, it must be granted, lends to it a 
certain degree of importance. 

The instruments of Lorenzo are exceedingly 
bold in design, and differ in this respect from 
those of Giovanni Battista, which retain much of 
the delicate form of Stradivari. Lorenzo frequently 
changed the form of his sound-hole, giving it the 
pointed character of Giuseppe Guarneri in some 
instances, and in others retaining the type of 
sound-hole perfected by his master. The model 
is inclined to flatness, the declivity being of the 
gentlest kind : the breadth of the design commands 
admiration. The scroll is certainly not an imita- 
tion of that of Stradivari ; it has considerable origin- 
ality, and is more attractive on that account than for 
its beauty. The varnish is not so brilliant as 
that of Giovanni Battista, but possesses a mellow- 
ness foreign to the other members of the family. 
The tone is powerful, tempered with a rich quality. 

Lorenzo Guadagnini was born at Piacenza, and 



ITALIAN MAKERS 123 

upon leaving the workshop of his master returned 
to his native town, where he remained until about 
the year 1695, at which period he is said to have 
removed to Milan. In the last mentioned city he 
continued to work until about the year I74O. 1 

GUADAGNINI, Giovanni Battista, Piacenza, 1711- 
86. Son of Lorenzo Guadagnini. He was born, 

according to Count 

Joannes Baptista Guadagnini Cn/in Hi ^alafmi- at 
. , e -i. if j- i v^ozio ui odiduue. at 



T-V. , e -i. if j- i 
Placentmus fecit Mediolani 17 

Cremona, and Lan- 
Joannes Baptista Guadagnini { h h 

Cremonensis fecit Taurmi 1776. 

worked with his 

father in Milan. Later he worked at Piacenza, 
then at Parma, where he became instrument- 
maker to the Duke. Upon the pensions to the 
artists of the Duke's Court being discontinued in 
1772, he went to Turin, where he died. 2 Count 
Cozio di Salabue communicated to Lancetti 
the following particulars relative to Giovanni 
Battista Guadagnini. He says : " He imitated 
Stradivari, but avoided close imitation of all 
detail, and prided himself on not being a mere 
copyist." He is said to have excited the jealousy 
of other makers, which caused him to move so 
frequently, but most likely he offended chiefly 
with his hasty temper. Many of his instruments 

1 This and other information relative to the Guadagnini 
family I have obtained from its descendants at Turin. 

2 The present representative of the family mentions 
Piacenza as the place of birth. 



124 THE VIOLIN 

made in Turin between 1773 and 1776 have wood 
of the handsomest kind. Count Cozio ordered 
from him several instruments which he added to 
his collection, among them two Tenors and two 
Violoncellos. The interest Count Cozio manifested 
with regard to this maker is shown in his having 
obtained from the parish registers the date of his 
birth and death. He states that he was born in 
Cremona in 1711, and died in Turin, September 
1 8, 1786. This last-named date is in conformity 
with that of 1785, given to me by the repre- 
sentatives of the family at Turin, as the last 
year in which he made instruments. Lorenzo has 
been regarded as the only pupil of Stradivari 
in the Guadagnini family ; but if their respective 
works be closely examined, it will be found that 
those of Giovanni Battista more closely resemble 
the instruments of Stradivari than even those of 
Lorenzo, which is suggestive of his having, in 
some way, been brought early under the great 
master's influence. 1 It is singular that his early 
labels contain no reference to Cremona, whilst 
on the late ones there is mention of the famous 
town, which evidences the correctness of the 
statement of Count Cozio relative to his birthplace. 
It is quite evident that he considered the model 
of Stradivari as that to be followed, and he does 
not appear to have changed his views on this 

1 The labels in many of the later instruments dating from 
Turin contain the words " alumnus Antoni Stradivari." 



ITALIAN MAKERS 125 

point at any time, all his works being in accor- 
dance with the teachings of the great master. 

Giovanni Battista was particularly happy in the 
selection of his wood, it being generally of the 
handsomest kind. The backs of his instruments 
are mostly found to be divided, the markings of 
the wood being very regular ; the bellies are of 
wood well chosen for tone, the varnish very trans- 
parent and of a brilliant colour. The scroll may 
be described as a rough imitation of that of 
Stradivari, and to partake generally of the 
character of the Stradivarian scroll from the date 
of 1728. The English possess some of the finest 
specimens of this maker, and were probably the 
first to recognise their sterling merits. In the 
correspondence which passed between Count 
Cozio di Salabue and Vincenzo Lancetti, in the 
year 1823, the Count says: "The instruments of 
G. B. Guadagnini are highly esteemed by con- 
noisseurs and professional men in Holland and 
Germany." 

GUADAGNINI, Gaetano, Turin. Son of Giovanni 
Battista. Was both a maker and a repairer of 
Violins ; it was, however, in the latter capacity 
that his abilities were mainly exercised. 

GUADAGNINI, Giuseppe. Second son of Giovanni 
Battista. Worked with his father for some time 
at Turin. He ultimately went to Lombardy, and 
settled in Pavia, where he made a great number 
of instruments. The work and character belong- 



126 THE VIOLIN 

ing to these instruments are varied. The model 
is that of Stradivari. In some instances the sound- 
holes partake of the character of Giuseppe Guar- 
neri. The varnish is inferior to that of his 
predecessors, and the wood often hard and plain. 
Some of his Violins bear the labels of his father, 
and were doubtless made when they were living 
together. 

GUADAGNINI, Carlo, Turin. Son of Gaetano 
Guadagnini. This maker is chiefly known as a 
maker of Guitars. Carlo left three sons, Gaetano, 
Giuseppe, and Felice. These are said to have 
been all makers of Violins, though they appear 
to have accomplished but little in that direction, 
with the exception of Felice. 

GUADAGNINI, Felice (or Felix), about 1835, 
Turin. Son of Carlo. Excellent work, varnish 
rather hard, well-cut scroll. 

GUADAGNINI, Antonio. Son of Gaetano and 
grandson of Carlo, born 1831, died 1881. Worked 
with much diligence, and produced a great number 
of instruments. His sons Francesco and Giuseppe, 
the representatives of a long line of Italian Violin- 
makers, learned at Turin the art so long asso- 
ciated with the family name, with a view to 
their following in the footsteps of their father 
Antonio. 

GUARNERI, Andrea, Cremona, born about 1626, 
died 1698. The name of " Guarnerius " is pro- 
bably known to every possessor of a Violin through- 



ITALIAN MAKERS 127 

out the world. The familiar style is attached to 
scores of copies and non-copies every week, and 

despatched to the 

Andreas Guarnerius fecit Cremonas r c .1 

sub titulo Sanctae Teresi* 16- f Ur quarters of the 

globe. Little did 

Andrea imagine that he was destined to be the 
means of lifting his patronymic of Guarneri to 
such a giddy height ! 

Andrea Guarneri, like Andrea Amati, was the 
pioneer of the family : but for his influence we 
might never have had the extraordinary works 
of his nephew, Giuseppe. How full of interest 
would the smallest events of Andrea's workshop 
life prove if we could only ascertain them ! We 
know that in early years he was working in the 
shop of Niccolo Amati. With what delight would 
any record, or even anecdote, of those golden days 
in the history of the Violin be received by the 
lovers of the instrument ! The bare idea that 
these men were living in daily close converse is 
sufficient to awaken interest of a lively nature 
in the mind of a lover of Fiddles. Unhappily, 
however, no Boswell was at hand to dot down 
events, of small value when passing, but of great 
consequence to after-time. The want of that direct 
biographical information which is handed down to 
us from recorded personal knowledge leads to 
the opening of many a mouldy, worm-eaten, and 
half-forgotten parish register, wherein we read, 
in language stiff and statutory, accounts of departed 



128 THE VIOLIN 

parishioners having duly performed and executed 
divers acts and deeds. These entries often shed 
much unexpected light on subjects previously 
dark or obscured. The pages of the Cremonese 
parish register, to which allusion has been made 
in the notices of the members of the Amati 
family, have served this purpose in some measure. 
From the same source we have a few interesting 
facts concerning Andrea Guarneri. It appears 
that Niccolo Amati entered, in the year 1641, 
the age of his pupil Andrea Guarneri in the parish 
rate-book as being fifteen years, thus supplying 
the hitherto unknown date of his birth. Again 
we learn that Andrea Guarneri does not appear 
to have been with Niccolo Amati in 1646, but 
was so in the year 1653, the register showing 
that he was at that date married. There is no 
further reference to his connection with Niccolo 
Amati after the year 1653. Andrea was married, 
December 31, 1652, and had seven children. Two 
of his sons, namely Pietro Giovanni and Giuseppe 
Giovan Battista, became Violin- makers. Andrea 
died on December 7, 1698, and we learn from 
the register that he was buried on the follow- 
ing day near the remains of his wife, in the Church 
of St. Domenico, in the same chapel where the 
body of Antonio Stradivari was laid forty years 
later. 

Andrea Guarneri for some years worked upon 
the model of his master, though he afterwards 



ITALIAN MAKERS 129 

changed the character of the sound-hole. 1 At the 
same time the form of the instrument became 
flatter, and the scroll showed signs of originality. 
The varnish is much varied, but is generally of 
a light orange colour of beautiful hue ; it some- 
times has considerable body, but when so, lacks 
the transparency of light-coloured varnishes. The 
Violoncellos are of two sizes. The wood in the 
Violoncellos is often very plain, but possesses singu- 
lar tone-producing qualities. The Violins of this 
maker are among his finest efforts ; the workmanship 
is excellent, but has not the fine finish of Amati. 

GUARNERI, Giuseppe Giovan Battista, second 
son of Andrea, born November 25, 1666. This 

maker possessed a 

Joseph Guarnerius filius Andreae fecit r 

Cremona sub titulo S. Tereske 16- greater amount of 

originality than An- 
drea. His earliest works evidence that power of 
thinking for himself which, later, led him to 
construct instruments entirely distinct from those 
produced by his father. The outline is particularly 
striking. The waist of the instrument is narrowed, 
rapidly widening, however, from the centre. The 
result is a curve of much elegance, one of the 
points which Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu appears 
to have admired, as he adopted and perfected it. 
It is here, more particularly, that a resemblance 
between this maker and his famous kinsman is 

1 Lancetti, in his MS., mentions 1670 as about the period 
of his change of style. 

K 



130 THE VIOLIN 

to be traced. There are also other features which 
will furnish matter for comment in their proper 
place. To return to the form given to the instru- 
ments of Guarneri, the son of Andrea : the sound- 
hole has a singular combination of the Amati 
and the Guarneri in its conception. We have here 
a reappearance of the pointed form which originated 
with the grand old Brescian master, Gasparo da 
Salo, and which was left by him to be revived 
and perfected by his followers. Andrea's son, in 
adopting this long-neglected form, showed much 
judgment. It must be admitted that he improved 
upon it, and left his cousin an easy task in com- 
pleting and perfecting it. 

The method of this maker with regard to the 
setting of the sound-holes in his instruments is 
peculiar. In his plan they are set in a lower 
position than is customary. Carlo Bergonzi fol- 
lowed him in this particular, and also in placing 
the hole a trifle nearer the edge of the instrument 
than is seen in most instruments. How interesting 
is it to observe the salient points wherein each 
maker seems to have adopted some isolated feature 
from a predecessor ! 

The varnish is of the richest description, and 
in some instances has been so plentifully used as 
to cause it to clot in some places ; nevertheless, 
its rare qualities are never deadened. 

He made Violins, Tenors, and Violoncellos, 
the latter being very scarce. The wood used in 



ITALIAN MAKERS 131 

his Violins and Tenors varies, but may be pro- 
nounced as generally handsome ; that of his 
Violoncellos is, on the contrary, chiefly plain, and 
the workmanship somewhat careless, but the tone 
is always fine in quality. Guarneri, Joseph, son of 
Andrea, according to the parish register, was 
married on January 4, 1690, and had six children. 
GUARNERI, Pietro Giovanni, Cremona and Man- 
tua, son of Andrea, born February 18, 1655. In 

this maker, again, 

Petrus Guarnerius Cremonensis fecit i i 

Mantuaj sub-tit. Sanctaj Teresize 1 6 tn< 

ality, his work, to- 
gether with his model, differing entirely from that 
)f his brother, and in outline from that of his father 
Andrea. There is increased breadth between the 
sound-holes ; the sound-hole is rounded and more 
perpendicular ; the middle bouts are more con- 
tracted, and the model is more raised. The scroll 
abounds in individuality of design. The ear is 
brought out with much effect ; the purfling is 
splendidly executed, the corners being worked 
up to that extreme point of delicacy which is 
:haracteristic of the works of Niccolo Amati. The 
purfling is embedded after the manner of Amati 
in his "grand" instruments, but to a greater 
extent. The varnish is superb ; its quality is of 
the richest description, and its transparency un- 
surpassed. Its colour varies; it is sometimes 
of a golden tint, sometimes of a pale red, on which 
the light plays with delightful variety. Pietro 



132 THE VIOLIN 

Guarneri used some of the finest wood. The 
bellies are invariably wide -in grain and very even. 

The parish register supplies the information 
that Pietro was married in the year 1677. He 
appears to have left Cremona for Mantua soon 
after the year 1698. He visited Cremona about 
the period when his father died ; in which year 
he appears to have acted as god-father at the 
christening of his brother Joseph's son Barto- 
lommeo. Pietro returned to Mantua, and later 
went to Venice, where he is said to have died at 
an advanced age. 

GUARNERI, Pietro, Mantua, born 1695. Son of 
Giuseppe filius Andrea. He followed to some 
extent the form of the instruments of his uncle 
Pietro, from whom, while in Mantua, he probably 
learnt his art. The work is very good, and his 
productions are well worthy of the Guarnerian 
name. The varnish is rich, but not so transparent 
nor so well laid on as to come up to the full 
standard. The scroll is rather weak. 

GUARNERI, Giuseppe, Cremona. Better known 
as Giuseppe del Gesu, his labels having the 

Joseph Guarnerius fecit j% Cypher j* s Upon them. 
Cremone Anno 17 IHS 

It is not known why 

he adopted this monogram, which is that of the 
Jesuits. It is possible that he belonged to a fra- 
ternity in Cremona, common at that period among 
Italian tradesmen, who banded themselves together 
in various societies bearing religious titles. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 133 

This famous maker of Violins was born at 
Cremona in the year 1687, and died in or about 
1745. The house of Giuseppe Guarneri is said 
to have been No. 5, Piazza S. Domenico, now 
called Piazza Roma. 

An extract from the register proves that 
Giuseppe Antonio Guarneri, legitimate son of 
Giovanni Battista Guarneri and Angela Maria 
Locadelli, was born at Cremona on June 8, 
1683, and was baptized on the nth of the same 
month, in the parish of San Donate, at the chapel- 
of-ease of the cathedral. 

This extract which was supposed to refer to the 
subject of this notice relates to a child who died in 
infancy, and it is now satisfactorily settled that 
Joseph del Gesu first saw the light on October 16, 
1687. The date of death is merely conjectural, 
and unsupported by definite evidence. 

The father of Guarneri del Gesu, namely Gio. 
Battista, was the son of Bernardo, a cousin of 
Andrea Guarneri. He does not appear to have 
had any knowledge of the manufacture of stringed 
instruments, and was thus an exception to the 
majority of a family which numbered many pro- 
minent makers within it. It has been asserted on 
all sides that Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu was a 
pupil of Antonio Stradivari, but in every case this 
statement has been made without a shadow of 
proof, either from recorded fact or analogy. That 
this bare assertion should have so long remained 



134 THE VIOLIN 

unchallenged is a matter of some surprise to the 
writer of these pages, who fails to see anything in 
common between the two makers, with the excep- 
tion of the varnish, and perhaps the high finish, as 
apparent in the works of the second epoch of 
Guarneri. The following remarks on this point 
are the result of the most careful consideration of 
the subject, and may serve to assist the reader in 
forming an opinion. 

Had Giuseppe Guarneri received his early in- 
structions from Stradivari, should we not expect 
his instruments to bear the character of the master 
in some slight degree ? The most diligent student 
will, however, fail to discover an early work of 
Guarneri bearing any likeness whatever to the 
work of Stradivari. Among the- instruments of the 
second epoch may be found a few that show some 
gleam of the desired similarity in respect of high 
finish ; but it would be to the earliest efforts of 
Guarneri that we should turn in our endeavour to 
discover the source of his first instructions. The 
faint gleam of similarity, then, attaching to the 
instruments of the second epoch, be it understood, 
is in no way sufficient to demonstrate that Guarneri 
was a pupil of Stradivari. Upon turning to other 
makers, what will be the result if we judge them 
by the criterion above mentioned? Bergonzi, 
Guadagnini,. Gagliano, and others, whose names it 
is unnecessary to mention, leave upon their earliest 
efforts the indelible stamp of the master who first 



ITALIAN MAKERS 135 

instructed them. To suppose that Guarneri del 
Gesu formed the single exception to the likeness 
between the work of master and pupil, is scarcely 
sufficient to satisfy the inquiry. 

There are three essential points of difference 
between Guarneri and Stradivari. The first is the 
outline of the work, which, as the mere tyro must 
at once observe, is totally different in their respec- 
tive instruments. The second is the sound-hole, 
in which, again, the two do not approach one 
another ; that of Guarneri is long, and a modified 
form of that of Gasparo da Salo. The third is the 
scroll, in which Guarneri is as distinct from Stradi- 
vari as it is possible to be. 

It may be asked, then, if not from Stradivari, 
from whom did Guarneri receive instruction ? I To 
disagree with what is popularly accepted, and yet 
to withhold one's own counter-theory, may perhaps 
tend to weaken one's case. There can be but one 
method to be pursued if, in the absence of any 
historical data, we set about the investigation of 
the question, viz., that of analogy. Starting upon 
this ground, the first step to be taken is to endea- 
vour to discover the maker whose work and style 
bear some degree of similarity to those of Giuseppe 
del Gesu. If we carefully review the works of 

1 The evidence if indeed it is to be characterised as such 
upon which it has been recently asserted that del Gesu 
was a pupil of Andreas Gisalberti is so trivial and altogether 
unconvincing that it seems unsuitable for discussion or 
analysis in a serious work of reference. EDITORS. 



136 THE VIOLIN 

the Cremonese makers, it will be found that 
Giuseppe Guarneri, son of Andrea, and a relative 
of Guarneri del Gesu, is the only maker in whose 
productions we can find the strong similarity 
needed. Analogy, therefore, would point to him 
as the instructor of his kinsman. Giuseppe 
Guarneri, son of Andrea, was del Gesu's senior 
by many years, and it is far more reasonable to 
conclude that it was in his workshop that del 
Gesu was first instructed, than that he was the 
pupil of a maker whose work he never copied, 
and whose style has nothing in common with his 
own. Enough has been said on this question to 
enable the reader to judge for himself, and this 
may the more readily be conceded when it is 
also admitted that, after all, it is of little impor- 
tance to determine where the early training of 
this kingly maker was passed, as he so soon dis- 
played that rare originality which separated him 
from his brethren for ever. 

We will now inquire into the character of 
Guarneri del Gesu's model. In forming this, he 
seems to have turned to Gasparo da Salo as the 
maker whose lead he wished to follow ; and if 
each point be critically considered, an impression 
is left that; after well weighing the merits 
and demerits of Gaspare's model, he resolved to 
commence where Gasparo ceased, and carry out 
the plan left incomplete by the great Brescian 
maker. To commence with that all-important 



ITALIAN MAKERS 137 

element the sound-hole, it will be seen that 
Guarneri del Gesu retained its pointed form. 
Next comes the outline of the body, where, 
again, there is much affinity to the type of 
Gasparo da Salo, particularly in the middle 
bouts. Lastly, the quality of wood selected for 
the bellies is in both makers similar. In con- 
tinuing the path trodden by Gasparo, Guarneri 
proved himself an artist possessed of no little 
discernment. His chief desire was evidently to 
make instruments capable of producing a quality 
of tone hitherto unknown, and that he succeeded 
is universally acknowledged. Workmanship, as 
evidenced by the instruments of his first and 
last epoch, was with him a purely secondary 
consideration. In the second epoch, his work 
shows him to have been not unmindful of it. That 
he brought much judgment to bear upon his 
work, the vast number of instruments that he 
has left and the great variety of their con- 
struction are sufficient to prove. The extent of 
his researches is surprising, and there is no 
ground for the assertion frequently made that he 
worked without plan or reason. The idea that 
such a maker as Guarneri groped in the dark 
savours of the ridiculous ; moreover, there is 
direct evidence, on the contrary, of his mar- 
vellous fertility of design. At one period his 
instruments are extremely flat, without any 
perceptible rise ; at another, the form is raised in 



138 THE VIOLIN 

a marked manner and the purfling sunk into a 
groove ; a parallel of this type of instrument is to 
be found in the works of Pietro Guarneri and 
Montagnana. At one time his sound-holes were 
cut nearly perpendicularly (a freak which, by the 
way, has some show of reason, for though it sacri- 
fices beauty, it also prevents the breaking up of 
the fibres), at another shortened and slanting, and 
some, again, are occasionally seen immoderately 
long. These hastily-marshalled instances are quite 
sufficient to show the extent of his experiments, 
and the many resources which he adopted in 
order to produce exceptional qualities of tone. 

In order that the reader may better understand 
the subject, before going farther into the peculiar 
features belonging to the instruments of Guarneri, 
we will classify his work. M. Fetis, doubtless 
under the guidance of M. Vuillaume, has divided 
the career of Guarneri into three periods an 
excellent arrangement, and one that cannot be 
improved upon. It only remains to point out 
certain peculiarities omitted in the description of 
these three stages which M. Fe*tis gives us. In 
the first epoch we find instruments of various 
patterns, the character of the sound-holes being 
very changeable. At one time there is a strange 
mixture of grace and boldness ; at another the 
whole is singularly deformed, and the purfling 
roughly executed, as though the maker had no 
time to finish his work properly. It seems as if 



ITALIAN MAKERS 139 

he had hastily finished off a set of Violins that he 
had already tested, eager to lay the stocks 
for another fresh venture. The second epoch 
has given us some of the finest specimens of the 
art of Violin-making. In these culminate the 
most exquisite finish, a thoroughly artistic and 
original form, and the most handsome material. 
In some cases the lustre of the wood of 
the backs, set in its casing of deep amber, 
that unrivalled varnish, may be likened to 
the effect produced by the setting summer 
sun on cloud and wave. The reader may 
pardon a somewhat novel application of the 
loveliest description of the glow of evening to be 
found in the compass of the English language, 
which paints the heavens' colours as 

" Melted to one vast iris of the west, 
Where the day joins the past eternity. 

. . . All its hues, 
From the rich sunset to the rising star, 
Their magical variety diffuse. 

And now they change ; a paler shadow strews 
Its mantle o'er the mountains ; parting day 
Dies like the dolphin, whom each pang imbues 
With a new colour as it gasps away, 
The last still loveliest, till 'tis gone and all is grey." 

The effect of this beautiful coruscation upon 
the backs of Violins is obtained by cutting the 
wood upon the cross, or, as the French term 
it, sur maille. It is seen, though rarely, on backs 



140 THE VIOLIN 

divided, when the wood is particularly handsome 
in curl. The varnish on such instruments is 
of a rich golden hue, highly transparent ; it is 
lightly laid on. The size of these works varies ; 
they are sometimes a trifle smaller than the other 
specimens of Guarneri. In the last epoch we 
find Violins of an altogether bolder conception, 
dating from about 1 740 and a little later. They are 
massively constructed, and have in them material 
of the finest acoustic properties. The sound-hole 
loses the pointed form so much associated with 
Guarneri : the purfling is embedded, the edges 
heavy, the corners somewhat grotesque, the scroll 
has a mixture of vigour, comicality, and majesty, 
which may force a smile and then a frown from 
the connoisseur. The comparison may seem a 
little forced, but the head of a thoroughbred 
English mastiff, if carved, might give some idea 
of the appearance sought to be described. Mr. 
Reade says of these instruments with much truth, 
" Such is the force of genius, that I believe in 
our secret hearts we love these impudent Fiddles 
best, they are so full of chic." Among the Violins 
of this period may be mentioned Paganini's, and 
M. Alard's, both rare specimens. These splendid 
chefs-d'oeuvre are strangely mixed with those 
commonly known as the "prison Fiddles" a sorry 
title. The name arose from the story current 
in Italy that Guarneri made some Fiddles whilst 
undergoing imprisonment, and that the gaoler's 



ITALIAN MAKERS 141 

daughter procured him the necessary materials, 
which were of the coarsest kind. M. Fetis refers 
to the story, and mentions that Benedetto 
Bergonzi, who died in 1840, used to relate it. 
Allusion is also made to it by Vincenzo Lancetti, 
to whom it was doubtless communicated by Count 
Cozio di Salabue. These references lead to the 
belief that the tradition has some foundation in 
fact, though not to the extent that he ended his 
days in durance vile. Lancetti refers to the offence 
as an encounter with some person in which his 
antagonist lost his life. 1 A deplorable circumstance 
of this kind may have occurred without the 
accused having been criminally at fault, though 
he may have suffered the penalty of being so. 
His reported love of wine and pleasure, his idle- 
ness and irregularity, in all probability were 
statements added by successive narrators of the 
prison story. A recent search made by Canon 
Bazzi in the obituary registers of the cathedral 
at Cremona, discovers the fact that one Gia- 
como Guarneri died in prison on October 8, 
1715. Bearing in mind how frequently we find 
fact and fiction jumbled together in historical 
pursuits, the prison story in connection with the 
name of Giuseppe Guarneri may have no other 
foundation than a story, long current, that a 
person named Guarneri was imprisoned, and 
wholly regardless of identity. 

1 Alexander Gagliano is the subject of a similar story. 



142 THE VIOLIN 

I have referred to the three periods of this 
remarkable man's life in relation to his art, and 
it remains to point out some other features in 
his work and material. His selection of wood, 
when he had the opportunity of exercising his 
own judgment, was all that could be desired, 
and the belly wood in particular was of the 
choicest description. He seems to have obtained 
a piece of pine, of considerable size, possessing 
extraordinary acoustic properties, from which he 
made nearly the whole of his bellies. The bellies 
made from this wood have a singular stain, run- 
ning parallel with the finger-board on either 
side, and unmistakable, though frequently seen 
but faintly. If we may judge from the constant 
use he made of this material, it would seem 
that he regarded it as a mine of wealth. The 
care he bestowed, when working it, that none 
should be lost, affords clear evidence of the value 
that he set upon this precious piece of wood. I 
have met with three Violins by Carlo Bergonzi, 
having bellies evidently cut from the same piece 
of pine, and these instruments passed as the 
work of Guarneri for a long period. The syca- 
more that he used was varied both in appearance 
and quality ; it is chiefly of a broad description 
of grain, the whole-backs being impressively 
marked like a tiger's skin. There are a few in- 
stances where, in his jointed-backs, the markings 
of the wood are turned upwards. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 143 

Upon examining the works of Guarneri with 
respect to their graduation, it is found that he 
varied very much as to the quantity of wood left 
in the several instruments. Notwithstanding these 
differences, however, it will be found, upon closer 
comparison of the thickness, that there is every 
reason to be sure that he had a guiding principle 
in their management. They vary with the quality 
of the wood ; and hard material was treated as 
needing a slighter solidity than wood of a softer 
nature. 

His workmanship in numerous instances is, 
without doubt, careless ; but, even in the instru- 
ments where this negligence is most observed, 
there is an appearance which at once excites the 
admiration of the beholder, and forces from the 
most exacting the admission that, after every 
deduction on account of want of finish, there 
remains a style defying all imitation. Who can 
fail to recognise the quaint head, into which he 
seems to have thrown such singular character 
by the mere turn of his chisel, and which, when 
imitated, always partakes of the ludicrous, and 
betrays the unhappy copyist who is unable to 
compass that necessary turn! In matters of the 
highest art it is always so ; the possessor of genius 
is constantly showing some last resort, as it were, 
impregnable to imitation. 

The sound-hole, also, of Guarneri always 
preserves its distinctive character, and a grotesque 



144 THE VIOLIN 

humour which at once pleases the eye, though it 
is found to vary considerably with the three 
periods of his life. Again, the button that 
portion of the back against which the heel of 
the neck rests, which forms a prominent mark 
in all Violins, and an evidence of style, has a 
remarkably pronounced development in the Violins 
of Guarneri, a.nd, in fact, may be said to give a 
vitality to the whole work. There are many 
instances where excellent and original specimens 
of workmanship have been, speaking artistically, 
ruined for want of skill in handling that simple 
factor of the Violin. 

Having endeavoured to point out the chief 
features in the work and style of this remarkable 
maker, I have only to add that his imitators 
would far exceed in number all the Violin-makers 
that the city of Cremona ever sheltered, There 
has ever been a diversity of purpose with these 
Guarneri imitators, distinct from those of Stradivari 
and others. They may be divided into three 
orders, viz., the bond fide copyist, the subtle copyist, 
and the wholesale copyist. The first sets about 
making his instrument resemble the original as 
closely as possible, and when completed, sends 
it forth as a copy, and nothing else. Among 
these legitimate imitators were Lupot, Gand, 
Vuillaume, and others. The subtle copyist takes 
advantage of the disturbed styles belonging to 
Guarneri, coupled with his misfortunes, manufac- 



ITALIAN MAKERS 145 

tures and translates at will. He "spots" a back 
on an old fiddle, in which he sees Guarneri in 
embryo ; he secures it. In his possession is a belly 
which, with a little skilful manoeuvring of sound- 
holes and corners, may be accommodated to the 
back. The sides need well matching in point of 
colour ; workmanship is purely secondary. The 
scroll he sets himself to carve, giving it a hideous, 
burglar-like appearance. The inevitable label is 
inserted, and the Violin leaves the translator's 
hand a " Prison Joseph." Now comes the diffi- 
culty. How is this "Joseph," unaccustomed to 
elbow his legitimate namesakes in the world of 
Fiddles, to maintain the character he has assumed ? 
'he subtle copyist puzzles his brain without 
irriving at anything very satisfactory. He 
resolves to slip it into a sale of household effects. 
[t is described in the catalogue, in glowing terms, 
is having been in the possession of Geminiani (he 
lot being alive to dispute the assertion). Previous 
to the sale the instrument is viewed. The knowing 
>nes pass it by with contempt. The ^^"-informecl 
turn it over and over, puzzled, and replace it in 
its case disconsolate, The thoroughly ignorant 
looks inside ; " Joseph Guarnerius Cremonensis 
faciebat 1724," in old type, stares him in the face ; 
puts the bow on the strings and demands 
the maker's name his thoughts are echoed back 
in gentle sounds: "Joseph Guarnerius." He re- 
turns it to its case, shuts the lid, and exultingly 

L 



146 THE VIOLIN 

sallies forth, congratulating himself again upon his 
good fortune in having at last the opportunity of 
securing the real thing at the price of "a mere 
song." The time of sale arrives. The beauties 
of the instrument are dwelt upon by the auctioneer ; 
he begs to be permitted to say two hundred 
guineas to commence with. Silence around. 
"Well, gentlemen, shall I say one hundred and 
fifty guineas?" Dogged silence. "Come, come, 
gentlemen, this is mere trifling. A ' Joseph 
Guarnerius ' for one hundred and fifty guineas ! 
Shall I say one hundred guineas ? " The cus- 
tomary witty frequenter of sale-rooms, unable to 
restrain himself longer, cries out, "I'll give yer 
a pound ! " The auctioneer sees the whole thing ; 
it is a copy that he is selling, and not the original. 
The pound bid is capped by another from our 
friend, who fondly fancies himself behind the 
scenes. The subtle copyist, seeing his eagerness, 
bids on his bid, and the " Joseph Guarnerius del 
Gesu " falls with the hammer to the anxious buyer 
for ten pounds. He demands possession of it 
at once, in case another may be substituted, and 
retires, perfectly satisfied with his day's work. 
The wholesale copyists are those who manufacture 
Violins in Bavaria and France in large factories, 
where the Violins undergo all kinds of processes 
to make them modern antiques. The wood is 
put into ovens and baked until it assumes the 
required brownness, or steeped in strong acids 






ITALIAN MAKERS 147 

until it becomes more like a piece of charred wood 
than anything else ; the sharp edges are removed 
by the file ; the wear of years is effected in a few 
moments by rubbing down those parts subject 
to friction ; it is ticketed and dated, regardless 
alike of orthography and chronology, the date being 
generally before or after the original's existence. 
These imitations are so barefaced as to render 
them comparatively harmless. 

GUIDANTI, Giovanni, Bologna, about 1740. 
High model ; sound-hole long ; purfling badly let 
in ; the outer form inelegant, particularly the 
middle bouts. At the Exhibition at Milan, 1881, 
a Viola d'Amore was exhibited, signed "Joannes 
Guidantus, fecit Bononise, anno 1715," ornamented 
with a beautiful head artistically carved, repre- 
senting a blindfolded Cupid. 

GUILLAMI, Spanish family of Violin-makers, about 
1680-1780. 

HARTON, Michael, Padua, 1600. Lute-maker. 

KERLINO, Joan, 1449. Maker of Viols. Numer- 
us instruments of the Violin shape have been 
attributed to this maker, particularly those of quaint 
appearance, but it is doubtful whether he made any 
instruments but those of the Viol type. 

LAGETTO, Luigi, Paris, about 1753. 

LANDOLFI, Carlo Ferdinando, Milan, 1750. 
Though he belonged to the latest of the Italian 
makers, his merits were of no ordinary kind. His 
instruments vary very much, and hence, probably, 



148 THE VIOLIN 

a confusion has arisen as to there being two makers 

of this name, which is 

Carolus Ferdmandus Landulphus, 
fecit Mediolani in Via S. Mar- not the .case. Those 



anno 17- instruments which 

have the bright red varnish are certainly the best. 
The varnish is very transparent, and, the wood 
being strikingly handsome, the effect is most 
pleasing. The pattern is not a copy of Guarneri, 
as often stated, but thoroughly original. His sound- 
hole cannot be considered an effective one, and 
is not in keeping with the work. The outer edge 
is generally grooved. The scroll is weak. His 
Violoncellos are mostly of small size. Some of 
this maker's instruments are very unfinished, many 
not being purfled, and having only a single coat 
of varnish. 

LANZA, Antonio Maria, 1674. Copied the 
Brescian makers. 

LAVAZZA, Santino, Milan, about 1700. 

Santino Lavazza fece in Milano in Contrada larga 17 

LAVAZZA, Antonio, Milan. 

Lavazza Antonio Maria fece in Milano in Contrada larga 17 

LINAROLLI, Venturo, Venice, 1520. A maker 
of Viols. 

LOLY, Jacopo, Naples, i7th century. Of the 
Grancino type. Scroll diminutive. Yellow varnish. 
Material very hard. Flat model. He made a few 
large tenors, 



ITALIAN MAKERS 149 

MAGGINI, Giovanni Paolo, Brescia, 1590. This 

famous maker 

Gio Paolo Maggini in Brescia. 

followed Gasparo da 

Salo, and was his pupil. It is surmised that he 
may have died of the plague in or about the year 
1632. No Italian maker is more frequently mis- 
taken than Maggini. Any instrument having orna- 
mentations on the back in the shape of purfled 
scroll-work is at once said to be by Paolo Maggini. 
Barak Norman, the old English maker, thus comes 
in for a large share of Maggini's patronage, as 
also a vast number of early German makers, who 
adopted similar devices ; to the real connoisseur, 
however, there is no difficulty in distinguishing the 
work. A more pardonable error is the confusion 
of Gasparo da Salo and Maggini, which is of 
frequent occurrence. The Double Basses of these 
two makers have much in common to the eye of 
the not deeply versed examiner. Maggini, how- 
ever, was not so successful as his compeer in the 
selection of the form of his instruments. In them 
we miss the harmony of outline belonging to those 
of Gasparo, particularly as relates to his Double 
Basses. Gaspare's Violins are less harmonious in 
design, and evince his unsettled views as to the 
form they should take ; a perfectly natural circum- 
stance when the infantile state of the Violin in 
his day is considered. The outline of Maggini 
is broad, but lacks the classic symmetry of the rare 
old Brescian maker. The form is flat, and the 



150 THE VIOLIN 

means which he adopted in order to obtain a full 
and telling tone were very complete. The sides 
are frequently shallow, and in accordance with the 
outline. With others who followed him, he 
evidently recognised the necessity of reducing the 
height of the sides in proportion to the dimensions 
of the instrument. The sound-hole is long and 
pointed, and admirably set in the instrument. The 
scroll is primitive, but boldly cut, and clearly marks 
an onward step from the somewhat crude produc- 
tion of Gasparo, the back of which is not grooved, 
or but slightly. Maggini's varnish is of brown or 
yellow colour, and of good quality. The instru- 
ments covered with the brown varnish are often 
without any device on their backs, and seldom 
have two rows of purfling. De Beriot, the famous 
Belgian Violinist, used one of Maggini's Violins, 
and, in consequence, their value was much in- 
creased. 1 

MALER, Laux, Bologna, about 1450. Maker of 
Lutes. Maler appears to have been regarded by 
Lutinists as the Stradivari of Lutes. Thomas 
Mace informs us in his " Musick's Monument," 1676, 
they were sold for as much as one hundred pounds 
each, though often "pittiful, old, batter'd, crack'd 
things." He tells us he has "often seen Lutes 
of three or four pounds price far more illustrious 
and taking to a common eye." History repeats 

1 The genuine labels are undated, as in the case of his 
master, Gasparo da Salo. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 4 151 

itself at every turn. The uneducated eye of to-day 
is equally apt to regard a Mirecourt or Bavarian 
copy with as much favour as a genuine Cremona. 
Mace proceeds to instruct the "common eye." 
" First, know that an old Lute is better than a 
new one." Thus also with Viols : " We chiefly 
value old instruments before new ; for by ex- 
perience they are found to be far the best." "The 
pores of the wood have a more and free liberty 
to move, stir, or secretly vibrate, by which means 
the air which is the life of all things, both animate 
and inanimate has a more free and easie recourse 
to pass and repass." This explanation accounts, 
in part at least, for the superiority of old over 
new instruments, and in language delightfully 
quaint and simple. 

MANTEGAZZA, Pietro Giovanni, Milan. Vincenzo 
Lancetti states that "about 1800 the Brothers 

Mantegazza were 

Pietro Giov Fratelli Mantegazza nella restorers of instru- 

Contrada di Santa Margarita in , c 

Milano al Segno dell' Anfelo 17- mentS > and W6re ften 

entrusted by French 
and Italian artistes to 

Petrus Jo es - Fratresq Mantegatia 1 en o- t hen the necks 
Mediolani in Via S. Margarite 

anno 1760. of their Violins after 

the Paris fashion, an 

,. , example which was 

Petrus Joannes Mantegatia, fecit 
Mediolani in Via S. Margaritas 1784. followed by amateurs 

and professorsallover 
North Italy." This extract shows that the short 



152 THE VIOLIN 

necks were dispensed with in Paris towards the 
close of the last century, and doubtless Viotti 
was the chief instigator with regard to the change. 
The family of Mantegazza, as Violin-makers, date 
back to about the middle of the eighteenth century. 
They appear to have made many Tenors. The 
workmanship is good, and also the modelling of 
the later-dated instruments. The older ones are 
rather high, but the varnish is brilliant. The wood 
is somewhat hard. Count Cozio was a patron of 
the Brothers Mantegazza, and he appears to have 
increased his knowledge of Italian Violins from 
information acquired from them. 

MARATTI, Verona, about 1700. 

MARCHETTI, Enrico, Turin, contemporary. 

MARIANI, Antonio, Pesaro, from about 1580 to 
1619. Long middle bouts and corners ; style and 
work very primitive, mostly double purfled. 

MEIBERI, Francesco, Leghorn, 1750. 

MESSEGUER, Spanish, about 1646. 

MEZADRI, Alessandro, Ferrara, 1690- 1722. 
The pattern is inelegant, and the sound-holes too 
close. 

MEZADRI, Francesco, Milan, about 1712. 

MIALFI, Joannes, 1769. The label is in Spanish. 
Ordinary character of work. 

MONTAGNANA, Domenico, Cremona and Venice, 

Dominicus Montagnana Sub Signo l 7" l 74- Pupil of 

Cremonas Venetiis 17- Antonio Stradivari. 

After leaving the workshop of his famous master, 



ITALIAN MAKERS 153 

he followed his art in Cremona. He afterwards 
removed to Venice, where Violin manufacture was 
in the most flourishing condition, and adopted the 
name of " Cremona " as the sign of his house. In 
days when houses were unnumbered, tradesmen 
were found by their sign, and they were often 
puzzled to select one both distinctive and effective. 
The Violin-makers of Italy, having exhausted the 
calendar of its Saints emblematic of Harmony, left 
it to the Venetian to honour the name of himself 
and the city which was the seat of the greatest 
Violin manufacture the world had witnessed. In 
Venice he soon attained great popularity, and 
made the splendid specimens of his art with which 
we are familiar. The instructions which he had 
received at Cremona enabled him to surpass all 
in Venice. He gained great knowledge of the 
qualities of material, and of the thicknesses to be 
observed ; and, moreover, he carried with him the 
superior form of the Cremonese school, and the 
glorious varnish. Mr. Reade names him " the 
mighty Venetian," an appellation not a whit too 
high-sounding, though it may appear so to those 
not acquainted with his finest works. The truth is, 
that Montagnana is less known than any of the 
great makers. For years his works have been 
roaming about, bearing the magic labels of 
" Guarnerius filius Andrese," " Carlo Bergonzi," 
and sometimes of " Pietro Guarneri," although 
there is barely a particle of resemblance between 



154 THE VIOLIN 

the works of our author and the makers named, 
whose labels have been used as floats. 

Montagnana was in every way original, but 
the fraud that has foisted his works upon makers 
who were better known has prevented his name 
from being associated with many of his choicest 
instruments, and deprived him of the place which 
he would long since have held in the estimation 
of the true connoisseur. This injustice, however, 
is fast passing away ; as ever, genius comes forth 
triumphant. 

The time is near when the "mighty Venetian" 
and Carlo Bergonzi will occupy positions little less 
considerable than that of the two great masters. 
Already the merits of these makers are daily more 
appreciated, and when the scarcity of their genuine 
works is considered, it becomes a matter of 
certainty that their rank must be raised to the 
point indicated. 

It is much to be regretted that both Montagnana 
and Bergonzi did not leave more numerous speci- 
mens behind them. Would that each had been 
as prolific as their common master ! We should 
then have inherited a store from which our coming 
Violinists and Violoncellists could have possessed 
themselves of splendid instruments, when those of 
Guarneri and Stradivari were placed far beyond 
reach. 

In these times, when the love of music is rapidly 
developing itself among all classes, the question 




GIUSEPPE GUARXERI DEL GESC. 

1737- 
(LATE H. O. HAVEMEYER, ESQ.) 



Plate 9. 



\ 



[To face p. 154. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 155 

of supply must attract notice. The prime question 
with respect to Violins of the highest character is 
not now as to price, but as to the supply of limited 
and daily decreasing material ; and the doubtful 
point is, not whether purchasers are to be found 
who may not be unwilling to pay the increased cost 
consequent upon scarcity, but whether the instru- 
ments required will be available in sufficient num- 
bers to satisfy the demands of those quite prepared 
to gratify their wishes for the possession of an 
instrument of the first rank. A single glance is 
sufficient to remind us that the list of makers of 
the highest class, and particularly of original artists, 
is scanty indeed. There are a few copyists, it is 
true, notably Lupot and Panormo, whose instru- 
ments must take a considerable position, but on 
the whole the demand will far exceed the supply. 
The difficulty here noticed is intensified from the 
fact of the Violin being sought after as it is, unlike 
any other musical instrument, for the cabinets of 
the collector as well as for actual use a state of 
things perfectly natural when its artistic beauties 
are considered. Violinists possibly consider they 
smart under a sense of wrong at the hands of col- 
lectors who thus indulge their taste ; but, on the 
other hand, we have reason to be grateful to the 
lovers of art for having stayed the hand of Time in 
demolishing these treasures. 

To return to the subject of this present notice : 
it is evident that when Montagnana left the work- 



156 THE VIOLIN 

shop of Stradivari, he gave full scope to his creative 
powers' He at once began to construct upon 
principles of his own, and thus followed the 
example of his fellow- worker, Carlo Bergonzi. If 
comparison be made between the work of Stradi- 
vari and that of Domenico Montagnana, with 
regard to detail, the two makers will not be 
found to have much in common. It is when 
Montagnana's instrument is viewed as a whole 
that the teaching of Stradivari is evidenced. A 
similar assertion may, in a lesser degree, be made 
in the case of Carlo Bergonzi. To dissect the 
several points of difference is a simple matter. If 
we begin with the outline, that of Montagnana has 
not the smoothness and grace of the Stradivarian 
type ; the upper and lower curves are flattened, 
while those of the centre are extended. The 
sound-hole partakes more of the character of 
Guarneri ; the scroll is larger, and the turns 
bolder than in the Stradivari form. These, then, 
may be considered to be the chief points wherein, 
if viewed as separate items, Montagnana seems to 
have varied from his master : and hence we may 
obtain some idea of the amount of originality 
belonging to this maker an amount, indeed, not 
inferior to that of any Cremonese artist that can 
be cited. The increasing popularity of Montag- 
nana's instruments is sufficient proof that his design 
was fraught with much that is valuable. In 
departing from the form of Antonio Stradivari, 



ITALIAN MAKERS 157 

Carlo Bergonzi and Montagnana doubtless intended 
to bring out in a stronger degree certain particular 
qualities of tone : at the same time we may be sure 
that they had no idea of attempting to improve 
upon Stradivari in his own field of work, for they 
must have well known the Herculean character 
of such a task. On the other hand, had these 
remarkable makers been mere copyists, they would 
certainly have handed down to us more instruments 
moulded in exact accord with the style of their 
great teacher ; while, at the same time, we should 
have lost many variations, which are at present not 
only an evidence of their fertility of resource, but 
also in themselves most pleasing objects. If, in the 
sister art, Tintoretto had made it his sole business 
to copy Titian, the world would have been rich in 
copies of Titian, but poor in Tintorettos. 

The varnish of Montagnana has long excited 
the admiration of connoisseurs throughout Europe. 
The extreme richness and velvet-like softness which 
are its characteristics constitute it a fitting counter- 
sign of the workmanship of this great maker, an 
artist of the first magnitude. He made Violins, 
Tenors, and Violoncellos. His Violins are of two 
sizes. 

MONTALDI, Gregorio, Cremona, 1730. Copied 
Stradivari. 

MORELLA, , Mantua, about 1550. M. Fetis, 

in his " Biographic Universelle des Musiciens," 
states that he was famous for his Viols and Lutes. 



158 THE VIOLIN 

S. Ang. Maffei, in his " Annali di Mantova " 
(fol. 147), highly praises the instruments made by 
Morella. 

NADOTTI, Giuseppe, Piacenza. A Violin by this 
maker was in 1881 exhibited at the Milan Exhibi- 
tion, dated 1767. 

NELLA, Raffaele, Brescia, copied Maggini. 

ORTEGA, , Madrid, about 1 840. Maker and 

restorer of instruments. 

PANDOLFI, Antonio, Venice. A Violin of this 
make, dated 1719, was among the instruments 
exhibited at the Milan Exhibition in 1881. 

PANORMO, Vincenzo, Palermo, born about 1740, 
died 1813. This maker was one of the most suc- 
cessful followers of Antonio Stradivari. Panormo 
and Lupot share the palm as copyists of the 
great Cremonese master. Neither appears to have 
attempted to create a model of his own ; their sole 
aim was to imitate to the utmost the various 
patterns of Stradivari, Guarneri, and Amati, but 
they principally confined themselves to Stradivari. 

Vincenzo Panormo left Italy in early life, and 
settled for a short time in Paris, from which city 
a few of his instruments are dated. From Paris 
he removed to London, where he remained many 
years. He also visited Ireland, where he made, 
it is said, several beautiful instruments from an old 
maple billiard-table, with which he was fortunate 
enough to meet. He was of a restless tem- 
perament, which showed itself in continual self- 



ITALIAN MAKERS 159 

imposed changes. He would not, or could not, 
permit his reputation to grow steadily, by residing 
long in one place, but as soon as fame was within 
his grasp, he sacrificed the work of years by re- 
moving to an entirely new field of labour. 

Panormo furnishes us with another example of 
the certain appreciation, sooner or later, of ex- 
ceptional talents. No matter how trifling the cir- 
cumstances under which gifted men have laboured, 
some time or other their genius is discovered, 
and acknowledged with its due award, if not of 
fortune, at least of fame. The peculiar circum- 
stances under which Panormo lived would have 
been sufficient in the case of most men to dwarf all 
efforts. Unable to obtain readily that patronage to 
which his abilities justly entitled him, he removed 
from city to city, hoping to discover a resting-place, 
in which favour might attend his art. No doubt 
this was a mistaken course, and one which robbed 
his work of the attention which a mind undisturbed 
by the care of existence can bestow ; nevertheless 
his natural gifts had a vitality that could not entirely 
be suppressed. He worked and toiled for his art 
and for bare sustenance alternately. His life, like 
that of many others in the paths of literature and 
science, was a continued battle with adversity. 
Such persons are forced to satisfy daily wants by 
slaving at work which brings them but little credit 
in after time, and becomes a standard by which 
they are too often erroneously judged. 



160 THE VIOLIN 

Vincenzo Panormo was the slave of many, manu- 
facturing Double Basses and other instruments 
from the material selected and purchased by his 
temporary employer, ofttimes compelled to carry 
out some crotchet of the patron much against 
his own wishes. The wood thus forced upon 
him was often of the worst description ; and, in 
addition, he was frequently obliged to complete 
his work within a given time. Instruments manu- 
factured under such conditions can scarcely, it may 
be supposed, add to their maker's reputation. We 
cannot but regret that he should have been obliged 
to waste himself on such poor materials. Fortu- 
nately, however, in some cases he found time to 
exercise his skilful powers to their full extent, 
and has thus bequeathed to us some of the finest 
specimens of the copyist's art. 

His workmanship is of a lighter description 
than that of Lupot, and is therefore more graceful. 
The sound-hole is admirably cut, and the scroll 
also well carved. 

PANSANI, Antonio, Rome, 1735. 

PASTA, Antonio, Brescia, 1700-1730. Good 
work. Model a little high ; varnish of soft quality. 

PASTA, Domenico, Brescia, about 1700. 

PAZZINI, Gaetano, Florence, about 1630, pupil 
of Maggini. 

PICINO, Padua, 1712. High model; dark 
varnish. 

PLATNER, Michel, Rome, about 1750. The in- 



ITALIAN MAKERS 161 

struments of this maker resemble those of Tecchler, 
both in workmanship and varnish. 

Michael Plainer fecit Romae anno 17 

POLLUSCA, Antonio, Rome, about 1751. 
POSTIGLIONE, Vincenzo, Naples, contemporary. 
PRESSENDA, Giovanni, Francesco, Turin. Born 
in the year 1777. The Violins bearing the label 

Joannes Franciscus Pressenda ^ Pressenda are CX- 
q. Raphael fecit Taurini cellently made, and 

Anno Domini 1826. 

in many instances 

the varnish is superior to that met with on any 
Violins dated from Italy in the present century. 
Pressenda appears to have interested himself to 
some extent in the matter of varnish. In a little 
book published in Italy J there is the following 
passage : "A pale reflection of the old art (Violin- 
making) is found in Piedmont, with Guadagnini." 
The writer continues with the following reference 
to Pressenda of Turin, who, he remarks, was in 
his youth at Cremona, "where he collected the 
traditions of the school as regards modelling and 
the preparation of the varnish, which is the chief 
merit of his Violins." It is almost needless to 
remark that traditional information is frequently 
unsatisfactory, but particularly so in connection 
with Cremonese Violin-making and varnishing, 
near the middle of the last century. In short, 
the great makers left no other record of the steps 
they took both in manufacture and in the prepara- 

1 " L'ltalie economique," 1847. 

M 



i62 THE VIOLIN 

tion of their varnish than can be discovered in 
their works. The instruments of Pressenda pre- 
sent a singular contrast with others of Italian make 
belonging to this century, most of which evidence 
what may be termed the throes of a dying manu- 
facture. With Pressenda we appear to have a 
new departure, in which there is some show of 
attention having been paid to the work accom- 
plished in the best workshops of Paris. The 
then condition of Violin-making in Italy made it 
necessary for any Italian maker no matter how 
great his ability to seek information elsewhere, 
if desirous of excelling in his art. Pressenda 
appears to have sought to emulate and even sur- 
pass many Parisian makers by associating his 
name for the most part with good and unsophis- 
ticated work. The results of his labours reflect 
no little credit on his skill and judgment. Pres- 
senda may be styled a born maker of Violins. 
From an account published by Signor Rinaldi, of 
Turin, in 1873, we learn that Pressenda was the 
son of poor parents, who lived in Lequio-Berria, 
a hamlet in the vicinity of Alba, in Piedmont. 
His father Raffaele was a strolling fiddler, and 
gained his precarious livelihood by playing at 
village fairs and other rejoicings. On these occa- 
sions he was accompanied by his son Giovanni, 
who followed the occupation of his father, playing 
the Violin with some degree of skill. It was at 
this period that he appears to have manifested a 



ITALIAN MAKERS 163 

desire to know something of Violin manufacture, 
and frequently asked for information from his 
parent, who, however, was rarely able to satisfy 
his curiosity. Learning that Cremona was in 
some way associated with good Violins, he re- 
solved to fiddle his way to that city. There he 
found Storioni, from whom he obtained some 
rudimentary knowledge of the manufacture he 
was so much interested in. Later he removed 
to Piedmont, and established himself in Alba in 
1814, as a maker of Violins. The patronage he 
gained was, however, insufficient to maintain him, 
and he combined the business of cabinet-making 
with his favourite pursuit. After removing to 
Carmagnola, he went in the year 1820 to Turin, 
where his abilities were recognised and rewarded. 
He was encouraged in his manufacture by Giovanni 
Battista Polledro, the famous Violinist, who, in 
1824, became Musical Director of the Royal 
Orchestra at Turin. Pressenda died in the year 
1854 at Turin. His Violins are chiefly of the 
model of Stradivari. The sound-holes are well 
cut. The thicknesses of his best instruments are 
well arranged, and the wood appears to have been 
selected with good judgment. The scrolls, whilst 
having much character, are somewhat roughly cut. 
The Violins belonging to his early period are 
chiefly of the Amatese character. 

RACCERIS, , Mantua, about 1670. 

RINALDI, Gioffredo, Turin. (Benedetti, Giof- 



164 THE VIOLIN 

fredo.) Chiefly known as a dealer in Violins. 
He exhibited a few Violins by Giovanni F. Pres- 
senda at the Vienna Exhibition, 1873, an d pub- 
lished a short notice of that maker, which he 
inscribed to the Archduke Rannieri. 

RIVOLTA, Giacomo, Milan, about 1822. Excel- 
lent work ; scroll well cut. One of the best 
Italian makers of the nineteenth century. 

ROCCA, Joseph Antonio, Piedmont, 1837-1863. 
Chiefly followed the pattern of Stradivarius. Neat 
workmanship, varnish rather thin, well-cut scroll. 
He worked for some time with Pressenda. 

RODIANI, Giovita, sometimes called Budiani ; 
Brescia, about 1580-1620. His instruments re- 
semble those of Maggini. Dragonetti is said to 
have had a Double Bass of this make. 

ROTA, Giovanni, Cremona. Yellow varnish, 
plain wood, heavy work, rough purfling. 

Joannes Rota fecit Cremonese Anno 1808. 

ROVETTA, Bergamo, 18403-70. 

ROGERI, Giovanni Battista, Cremona and Brescia. 
The word Bon after his name refers to his having 
been a citizen of Bologna. Vincenzo Lancetti 

speaks of its being 

Io : Bapt. Rogenus Bon : Nicolai 

Amati de Cremona Alumnus certain that he called 



Brixiae fecit Anno Domini 1705. himsel f 

The instruments of this maker are of a different 
pattern from those of Francesco Ruggeri. They 



ITALIAN MAKERS 165 

are higher modelled, the sound-holes less elegant, 
and the scroll heavier. They possess, however, 
high merits, and command prices nearly equivalent 
to those of the instruments of Francesco. The 
labels of this maker are sometimes met with 
printed in red ink. The instruments he made 
of large Amati pattern are highly valued. He 
appears to have worked from about the close of 
the seventeenth century. Count Cozio di Salabue 
and Lancetti speak of G. B. Rogeri having worked 
down to 1723, and possibly later, and state that he 
lived for many years in Brescia. There are some 
instruments bearing original Amati labels of this 
make, made, doubtless, when he was in the shop 
of Amati. 

ROGERI, Pietro Giacomo, Brescia, describes him- 
self on his label as a pupil of Niccolo Amati. 
Lancetti refers to a Violoncello by Pietro Rogeri 
as having belonged to Count Cozio, and remarks 
that he was a "nearly unknown member of the 
Rogeri family." The date of the instrument is 
given as 1714. He cannot now be looked upon 
as almost unknown, since Signer Piatti played 
for many years upon a famous Violoncello of 
his make. The pattern is a little narrower 
than that of G. B. Rogeri. Varnish of beautiful 
quality ; sound-hole resembles - that of Francesco 
Ruggeri. 

RUGGERI, Francesco, Cremona, 1668-1720. 
Surnamed" II Per." The family of Ruggeri long 



i66 THE VIOLIN 

occupied a foremost place in the city of Cremona 

as makers of Violins, 

Francesco Rugged detto ^ , ,T. , 

il Per Cremona 16- Tenors, and Violon- 

cellos. Their posi- 
tion must have been but little inferior to that of 
the Amati family. Francesco, in his earliest 
works, gives evidence of exceptional artistic feeling, 
and the sequel of his career, as evidenced by his 
productions, is a genuine development of the first 
impulses of his genius. His work belongs to the 
school of Amati, but though the list of instru- 
ments which he has bequeathed to us be a long 
x one, there is no sign of his ever having been a 
mere copyist. He evidently thought for himself. 
His sound-hole is a beautiful piece of workman- 
ship, and may be said to come between that of 
Niccolo Amati and Stradivari, being of the most 
delicate execution. The outline of his work is 
very graceful, and the arching admirable. The 
scroll has quite an equal merit with the body. 
He was very successful in selecting his material, 
much of which is handsome. His varnish, 
thoroughly Cremonese in character, and of a 
most beautiful hue, may be equalled, but never 
surpassed. This maker also knew how to use 
his varnish. There is no instance in which 
it has been laid on in clumsy patches ; the 
surface is always true and even, and, in con- 
sequence, the brilliancy of its appearance is 
perfect. Lancetti remarks, " Francesco Ruggeri 



ITALIAN MAKERS 167 

was a pupil of Niccolo Amati, and perhaps 
a more exact imitator of his instruments than 
G. B. Rogeri, and made several instruments, 
beautifully finished, and which are not easily- 
distinguished from those of his master." Count 
Cozio possessed a fine Violin by Francesco, dated 
1684, and the Marquis Castiglioni also possessed 
one made in the same year. Francesco Ruggeri 
died at the house No. 7, Contrada Coltellai, 
Cremona. 

RUGGERI, Giacinto detto II Per, Cremona. Son 
of Francesco Ruggeri. A Violoncello bearing 
this label is in the possession of Mr. G. Foster 
Cooke : 

Giacinto filio di 

Francesco Ruggeri detto il Per 

1696. 

RUGGERI, Vincenzo, Cremona, also uses the 
name " II Per." Worked from about 1700 to 
1730. He appears to have made many Violon- 
cellos. 

Vincenzo Ruger detto il Per 
in Cremona 17 

RUGGERI, Giambattista, Cremona. About 1693. 
Also called himself II Per. Lancetti suggests 
that this maker was a relative of Francesco. 
He made several Violoncellos of large size and 
deep sides, the wood of which is often plain. 
The varnish is of good quality and dark brown 
colour. He also made Violins and Tenors, the 
latter being excellent instruments. 



i68 THE VIOLIN 

SACCHINI, Sebastiano. 

Sebastino Sacchni da Pesaro 1'anno 1686. 

SALO, Gasparo da. His real name was Gasparo 
dei Bertolotti. The researches of Cavalliere Livi, 
keeper of the Brescian Archives, have brought 
to light much valuable information as to this 
famous maker. He was born in the town of 

Salo (Province of 

Gasparo da Salo Brescia. 

Brescia) in or about 

the year 1542, died there on the i4th of April, 
1609, and was buried in the church of San Joseffo. 
A son (Francesco) appears to have worked with 
him and to have died in 1614. Several Viols 
of Gasparo's workmanship, of different sizes, are 
still extant. The Violins are very rare. A few 
large Violas exist, the tone of which is magni- 
ficent. His genuine labels bear no date. Gio 
Paolo Maggini was apprenticed to him, and is 
believed to have purchased the business, after 
Gasparo's death, from his son Francesco. 

To Gasparo da Salo belongs the credit of 
having laid the foundation of the Italian style 
of Violin-making. In his works may be traced 
the gradual development of the system upon which 
his followers built their reputation, viz., a well- 
defined model, excellent materials, and choice 
varnish. It is to be regretted that his immediate 
followers, with the exception of Paolo Maggini, 
departed from the path so successfully trodden 



ITALIAN MAKERS 169 

by this great pioneer. But for this deviation, 
the works of the early Amati and a few others 
would have occupied a higher position than that 
which they now command. They were men 
possessing great abilities, and might easily have 
carried out the designs of the great Brescian 
maker. They appear, however, to have arrived 
at a different conclusion, as regards the form of 
their instrument, from that shaped by Gasparo 
da Salo. Their works show an evident preference 
for the high model, and thus undid much that 
Gasparo had accomplished. It is clear that 
Gasparo only arrived at his conclusions after 
painstaking labour, for he commenced with the 
high form, and gradually, as experience taught, 
lowered it. It is, further, remarkable that the 
latter members of the Amati family pursued the 
same course as Andrea Amati (though in a 
less degree), after which they awoke, as it were, 
to the reasonableness of the example set by 
Gasparo, and gave us those instruments so highly 
thought of by the connoisseur, the form of which 
has much in common with that adopted by Niccolo 
Amati and perfected by Antonio Stradivari. 

It has been before remarked that Gasparo da 
Salo did not arrive at his conclusions without 
mature consideration. In fact, a long and de- 
liberate process of experiment may be traced in 
his instruments. We find that at times his 
Violins and Violas were treated differently from 



i?o THE VIOLIN 

the Accordos and Violonos. The Violins are 
found to be high in model, while the above- 
named instruments, evidently of the same date, 
are flat. He would seem to have been desirous 
of testing the powers of either model, and it 
is possible that he fostered the idea of varying 
the construction of each of the four species in the 
family of stringed instruments according to the 
part which should be allotted to it. To treat 
each part of the stringed quartette in a different 
way is certainly an error, for they are to be 
looked upon as gradations of one and the same 
instrument ; nevertheless, the attempt of Gasparo, 
although mistaken, offers but another instance of 
his prolific ingenuity and unwearied diligence. 
All praise is due to the great Brescian maker 
for having opened up, as a pioneer, so wide a 
field of research. The Cremonese artists followed 
up his clue, and brought the Violin to the highest 
state of excellence. 

The chief characteristics of the works of 
Gasparo da Salo are the sound-holes, shortened 
centre-bouts, scroll, and peculiar choice of material. 
The length of the sound-hole at first strikes one 
as somewhat crude, but as the eye becomes more 
acquainted with the general form of the instru- 
ment, it is seen to be in perfect harmony with 
the primitive outline. With this sound-hole 
commences the pointed form to which Giuseppe 
Guarneri, nearly a century and a half later, gave 




Plate 10. 



DOMEXICO MOXTAGXAXA. 

(GEO. GUDGEON, ESQ.) 



[To face p. 170. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 171 

such perfection. The material used for the larger 
instruments is mostly pear-wood, or wood of 
that description, the quality of which is particularly 
fine. In the selection of this wood he showed 
a still minuter discrimination, using it generally 
for Accordos and Violonos, and not for Violins 
or Violas ; few specimens of the latter have 
backs of pear-wood. His work was bold, but 
not highly finished ; no other result could be 
looked for at so early a date. The grain of the 
bellies is usually very even and well defined. 
Signor Dragonetti, the late eminent Double-Bass 
player, possessed three or four Double- Basses by 
this maker of various sizes. The most celebrated of 
these instruments was presented to him by the 
monks of the monastery of St. Mark's, Venice, about 
the year 1776, and was returned to the Canons 
of that Church (the monks and the monastery 
having been suppressed since the French occu- 
pation of Venice in 1805 or 1809) after Drago- 
netti's death, in 1846. Another was bequeathed 
by Dragonetti to the late Duke of Leinster. A 
third is in the possession of the Rev. George 
Leigh Blake. Among his chamber Double- 
Basses the one formerly belonging to Mr. 
Bennett is regarded as a singularly perfect 
example. It was numbered with the rarities 
of Luigi Tarisio's collection, and highly valued 
by him as a specimen of the maker. Among 
his Violins, the instrument formerly owned by 



172 THE VIOLIN 

Lord Amherst, of Hackney, is unique ; the 
infancy of the Violin at this period is better 
seen here than any specimen with which I am 
acquainted. The Violin of this make which 
belonged to Ole Bull, and with which I am 
familiar, is another well-known example. This 
instrument is characteristic of its author. Its 
varnish is soft-looking and rich, though paler 
than usual. The finger-board is inlaid, and is 
made of a light description of wood. The head 
is carved and painted, and is a very choice 
piece of Italian work. 

SANONI, Giovanni Battista, Verona. About 1 740. 
His instruments are seldom met with in England. 
High model. 

SANTO, Giovanni, Naples, 1700-30. Copied 
Amati. Varnish very hard, and workmanship 
indifferent. 

SANZO, Milan. Middle and early eighteenth 
century. Similar to Grancino. 

SARDI, , Venice, 1649. A broken Violin 

bearing this name was at the Milan Exhibition, 
1881. 

SEIGHER, Girolamo. Worked in the shop of 
Niccolo Amati from 1680 to 1682. 

SELLAS, Matteo, Lute-maker. M. Chouquet, in 
his "Catalogue Raisonne" " of the instruments at 
the Paris Conservatoire, mentions two Arch-Lutes 
made by this maker. 

SERAFINO, Santo, Udine Venice, 1710-48. 






ITALIAN MAKERS 173 

This maker is chiefly famed for the exquisite 

finish of his 



Sanctus Seraphin 

utinensis Fecit manship. The model- 

Venetijs Ann. 17 ,. r1 . ., 

ling of his instruments 

varied. There are instances, particularly in the' 
case of his Violins, where he has entirely set 
aside the Stainer form, and copied Amati. 
These Violins are wonderfully like the work of 
Francesco Ruggeri. The varnish upon them, 
of a rich red colour, is of so exceptional a 
quality, that one is compelled to look twice before 
being satisfied as to the author. The greater 
number, however, of his instruments are of the 
German character, the sound-hole, scroll, and 
outline all hinting of Stainer. These Venetians 
were wonderfully fortunate in obtaining handsome 
wood, and in this respect Santo Serafino was 
pre-eminent, for his sides and backs are simply 
beautiful to perfection. His method of cutting 
the wood was invariably to show the grain in 
even stripes. The scroll is well cut in point 
of workmanship, but the style is poor. Santo 
Serafino cannot be regarded as having displayed 
originality in any shape, and he thus forms an 
exception to the great majority of Italian makers. 
His instruments are either copies of Amati or 
of Stainer ; there is, of course, a strong Italian 
flavour about his Stainer copies, which lifts them 
above the German school of imitators, and hence 
their higher value. Nearly all his instruments 



174 THE VIOLIN 

were branded with his name above the tail-pin. 
He used an ornamental label of large size. The 
Violoncello in the possession of Mr. M. J. Astle 
is a charming specimen of Serafino's work, I may 
say unequalled. 

SNEIDER, Josefo, Pavia. Lancetti remarks 
that many of the Violins by Girolamo 
Amati, son of Niccolo, were attributed to this 
maker. 

Joseph Sneider Papiae 

Alumnus Nicolai Amati Cremonae 

fecit Anno 17 

SOCCHI, Vincenzo, 1661, Bologna. In the Cata- 
logue of M. Chouquet mention is made of a Kit 
or Pochette by this maker in the Paris Conser- 
vatoire. 

. SORSANA, Giuseppe, 1700-1750. Said to have 
been a pupil of Stradivari. Highly finished work, 
varnish of beautiful quality. 

Joseph Sorsana fecit 
Cremone sub discip. Ant. 
Stradivarii 1737. 

STATLEE, Anderl, Genoa, about 1714. Signed 
himself as a pupil of Hieronymus Amati (son of 
Niccolo). Not unlike the work of Urquhart. 

STREGNER, Magno, Venice, Lute-maker. 

STORIONI, Lorenzo, Cremona, about 176910 1799. 
The last of the old makers who evinced any 
marked degree of originality. Although there is 



ITALIAN MAKERS 175 

an almost total absence of refinement in his works, 

there is much that is 

Laurentius Storioni Fecit i v i i 

Cremonae 17- deVer > whlch haS &*- 

dually caused these 

instruments to be valued very highly. He appears 
to have made Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu his idol. 
Although his instruments cannot be considered as 
copies, yet there is evidence of his having made 
use of the salient points belonging to Guarneri, 
which he fitted, as it were, to his own model. He 
had much of the disregard of mere appearance 
which Guarneri so often displayed, and seems to have 
been guided by similar fancies. His freak was to 
place his sound-holes in all sorts of ways, scarcely 
twice alike. His outline is always vigorous, but 
without thought of symmetrical appearance. There 
is not an instrument of his make that could have 
been made upon a mould they were built from 
the blocks, and the result, as may be expected, is 
not graceful. M. Vieuxtemps, some years ago, 
possessed himself of a Storioni Violin, now be- 
longing to Mr. Proctor, and, having carefully 
regulated it, succeeded in bringing forth its great 
powers. His hearers were so delighted that atten- 
tion was speedily directed to this neglected maker. 
These instruments are highly thought of in Italy. 
The varnish is not of the Cremonese description, but 
partakes of the Neapolitan character. The purfling 
is unusually narrow, and roughly worked ; the scroll 
is stiff, and the absence of finish is observable. 



176 THE VIOLIN 

The material he used was generally good in point 
of acoustical properties, though not handsome. 
Storioni does not appear to have made many Tenors 
or Violoncellos the latter are rarely met with. 

Storioni died in 1799. He lived at the house 
No. 3, Contrada Coltellai, which was afterwards 
occupied by G. B. Ceruti. 

STRADIVARI, Antonio, Cremona. 

"The instrument on which he played 
Was in Cremona's workshops made, 
By a great master of the past, 
Ere yet was lost the art divine ; 
Fashioned of maple and of pine, 
That in Tyrolian forests vast 
Had rocked and wrestled with the blast ; 
Exquisite was it in design, 
A marvel of the lutist's art, 
Perfect in each minutest part ; 
And in its hollow chamber, thus, 
The maker from whose hands it came 
Had written his unrivalled name 
' Antonius Stradivarius.' "LONGFELLOW. 

The renown of this remarkable maker of Violins 
is beyond that of all others ; his praise has been 

sung alike by poet, 

Antonius Stradiuarius Cremonensis - , 

Faciebat Anno 17- aitlSt > and m USlCian. 

His magic name is 

ever rising to the lips in the presence of the " king 
of instruments " ; its sound is as familiar to the 
humble player as to the finished artist. He 
has received the undisputed homage of two 
centuries, and time seems but to add to the number 



ITALIAN MAKERS 177 

and devotion of his liege subjects : to-day he is as 
little likely to be dethroned as Shakespeare. 

Although many interesting particulars concerning 
Antonio Stradivari have been obtained from time 
to time, there is wanting that which alone can fully 
satisfy his admirers, viz., connected records of the 
chief events of his life. Every endeavour has 
been made to supply, in some way, this deficiency, 
by consulting documents relating to the city of 
Cremona during the i;th and i8th centuries. The 
results of these inquiries are of much value, and the 
reader will be made acquainted with them in the 
following pages. 

With a patience worthy of reward, the late 
librarian at Cremona, Professor Peter Fe"cit, 
searched for the will of Stradivari, but as no 
proper register appears to have been kept until 
long after the famous maker died, his efforts were 
unsuccessful. Although the contents of the will 
might throw but a faint light upon the doings of 
the testator, there might be found particulars that 
would link together much of the information we 
already possess. 

The date of birth of Antonio Stradivari was 
made known to M. Fetis in I856, 1 upon evidence 
contained in an inventory of instruments which 
belonged to Count Cozio di Salabue. The inven- 
tory was made upon the occasion of the instruments 

1 u Antoine Stradivari, luthier celebre," par F. I. Fetis. 
Paris, 1856. 

N 



178 THE VIOLIN 

being deposited with Carlo Carli, a Milanese 
banker. Among the Violins there appears to have 
been one by Antonio Stradivari, bearing a label 
upon which, in the handwriting of its maker, 
was stated his age, namely, ninety-two years, 
and the date 1736; thus making the year of birth 
1644. 

"That plain white-aproned man who stood at work, 
Patient and accurate, full fourscore years, 
Cherished his sight and touch by temperance ; 
And, since keen sense is love of perfectness, 
Made perfect Violins, the needed paths 
For inspiration and high mastery." 

Stradivari, by GEORGE ELIOT. 

Previous to the publication of this evidence by 
M. Fe"tis, the date of birth was given as 1664, and it 
has been stated as 1644 or 1650. Don Paolo Lom- 
bardini, in his pamphlet on Stradivari published at 
Cremona in 1872, gives an interesting genealogical 
account of the great Cremonese maker and his 
family. The author follows the date of birth 
as stated by M. Fetis. This is succeeded by 
information of his own discovery, namely, 
the date of the marriage of Stradivari, July 4, 
1667. 

He appears to have married a widow named 
Capra, whose maiden name was Ferraboschi, her 
age being twenty-seven, and that of Stradivari 
twenty-three, according to the date given by Lom- 
bardini. 

It is interesting to find evidence of some impor- 



ITALIAN MAKERS 



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180 THE VIOLIN 

tance relative to the question of the age of 
Stradivari from the pen of Lancetti. He says, 
" Antonio having worked to the age of ninety-three 
years, died in Cremona in the year 1738, at the age 
of ninety-four years." Though this is obviously 
incorrect (the register showing that he died in 
J 737) the extract serves to support the date of 
birth, resting upon the evidence of the inventory, 
inasmuch as it satisfactorily shows the age Stradi- 
vari was considered to be by his own family, since 
Count Cozio communicated the information to 
Lancetti from correspondence with Paolo Stradi- 
vari, son of Antonio. In passing, it may be 
observed that. Stradivari died December 18, 1737, 
and therefore the year mentioned by his son Paolo 
was only incorrect by thirteen days. He was 
equally as near the truth in saying his father was 
ninety-four when he should have said he was in his 
ninety-fourth year. 

Having referred to the manuscript inventory, 
upon which rests the date of birth as given by 
Fe*tis which document, taken by itself, it must be 
said is unsatisfactory and having noticed the age 
of Stradivari as represented by his son, I will turn 
to other evidence in support of the inventory. The 
late Mr. Muntz, of Birmingham, possessed a Violin 
by Stradivari, dated 1736, and, in writing, the 
age of the maker is given as ninety-two. Another 
Violin by Stradivari, made in the same year, and 
similarly labelled, was bequeathed by the late Mrs. 







ITALIAN MAKERS 181 



ewis Hill to the Royal Academy of Music. 
This Violin has been regarded as one of the 
instruments found in the maker's shop when he 
died. It originally belonged to Habeneck, the 
well-known professor, and was taken to Paris 
between the years 1824 and 1830. Luigi Tarisio 
became possessed of some of the instruments 
mentioned in the inventory found among the papers 
of Carlo Carli, the banker, and one of these Violins 
in all probability furnished the evidence of the date 
of birth referred to by M. F^tis, and both instru- 
ments were probably purchased by Tarisio, together 
with the Violin dated 1716, named by Vuillaume 
"le Messie." I The last instrument necessary to 
notice in confirmation of the date, hitherto resting 
alone on the inventory, was in the possession of the 
late M. H. de St. Sennoch, of Paris. It is dated 
1737, and in the handwriting of Stradivari is his 
age, ninety-three years, which decides the correct- 
ness of the statement made by Lancetti (upon the 
authority of Count Cozio di Salabue, who received 
the information from Paolo Stradivari in 1775) that 
" Antonio worked up to the age of ninety-three 
years." 

In the absence of direct information concerning 
the life of Stradivari, we must turn to his instru- 

1 The information which M. Fetis gives of this Violin 
was based on the inventory of Carlo Carli. It is also 
mentioned in the correspondence between Count Cozio 
and Lancetti. 



i82 THE VIOLIN 

merits for such evidence as we require ; and these, 
happily, give us a greater insight into his career 
than would be readily imagined. I am not aware 
that any Violin of Stradivari is known in which it 
is stated that he was a pupil of Niccolo Amati, or 
that the assumption has been maintained on any 
other grounds than the indisputable evidence fur- 
nished by the early instruments of this great maker. 1 
Never has affinity in the 'art of Violin manufacture 
been more marked than that between Stradivari 
and Niccolo Amati during the early life of the 
former. I have, in another place, remarked upon 
the almost invariable similarity occurring between 
the works of master and pupil, and have used this 
canon in refutation of the doctrine that Giuseppe 
Guarneri del Gesu was ever a pupil of Antonio 
Stradivari. Lancetti states that the instruments of 
Stradivari made in 1665, and others in 1666, bear 
the label of Niccolo Amati, and instances one that 
was in the collection of Count Cozio, to which 
Stradivari made a new belly, many years later, in 
his best style. It is certain that instruments as 
described by Lancetti have been recognised by 
intelligent connoisseurs as wholly the work of 
Stradivari (in which case, as may be imagined, they 
have no longer been allowed to sail under false 
colours, but have had their proper certificate of 

1 Upon reference to Lancetti's MSS., I find that he states 
Stradivari used a label with the words u Nicolai Amati 
Alumnus," about 1666. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 183 

>irth attached to them). In other instances the 
)eautiful scroll of Stradivari has been recognised on 
body of an Amati, or the sound-hole has shown 
lat it was cut by the hand of Stradivari. 
Having met with a Violin by Stradivari (since 
ic publication of the first edition of this work) 
lated 1666, it would appear that he left the work- 
shop of his master at that time, or not later than 
ic year of his marriage in 1667. The extracts 
>btained by Canon Bazzi from the parish registers, 
Native to the pupils of Niccolo Amati, help to 
>tablish the correctness of this view. Stradivari 
lust have been in the workshop of his master 
itween the years 1658 and 1666. We have no 
iformation of the pupils of Amati from 1654 to 
1665. In 1666 the name of Giorgio Fraiser is 
;iven.; consequently Stradivari must have left 
>revious to 1666 or early in that year, and prior 
to the registration. Between the years 1666 and 
1672 there is observable a marked change in style, 
and the workmanship is better. The instruments 
he made about this period have wood for the most 
part singularly plain, and different in kind from what 
his master used. His use of this material I am 
disposed to attribute to the want of means rather 
than choice. The purfling of these early instru- 
ments is very narrow, and many of the backs are 
cut slab-form. Previous to about the year 1672, 
we find that his whole work is in accordance with 
the plans of Amati (not as seen in the latter's grand 



184 THE VIOLIN 

pattern, but in his ordinary full-sized instrument) ; 
the arching is identical, the corners are treated 
similarly, the sound-hole is quite Amati-like in 
form, yet .easily distinguished by its extreme deli- 
cacy, the scroll a thorough imitation of Amati, and 
presenting a singular contrast to the vigorous indi- 
viduality which Stradivari displayed in this portion 
of his work a few years later. Enough has been 
said to enable the reader to recognise the connec- 
tion which must have existed between Amati and 
Stradivari, to admit of such marked resemblances. 
Taking the instruments of Stradivari as beacons 
throwing light upon many curious and interesting 
points of the maker's manufacture, the number and 
character of his Violins and Violoncellos made 
during the decade following 1674 is indicative of 
his having increased both his reputation and his 
patronage. The last year of this period, namely 
1684, was that in which his master, Niccolo Amati, 
died, at the age of eighty-eight. We have already 
seen, in the notice of Amati, that Niccolo was the 
last member of the family who maintained unbroken 
the long chain of associations connected with the 
house of Amati, extending over a period of a 
century and a half. The circumstance of all the 
tools, patterns, and models of Niccolo Amati having 
passed into the possession of his pupil Stradivari, 
and not into that of his son Girolamo (who was 
then thirty-five years of age), clearly shows that the 
son did not succeed to his father's business. We 



ITALIAN MAKERS 185 

are thus led to believe that during the ten years 
above referred to, Niccolo Amati had been 
gradually lessening his activity, and that the 
patronage so long enjoyed by the Amati family fell 
for the most part to his gifted pupil, Antonio 
Stradivari. Among the interesting items of infor- 
mation supplied by the efforts of Paolo Lombardini, 
relative to Stradivari, is that of the purchase of the 
house, in 1680, of the Brothers Picenardi for seven 
thousand imperial lire, equivalent to above ^800 in 
present English money. This purchase, made 
about fourteen years after Stradivari began to 
manufacture on his own account, well marks the 
progress he made. I have, however, further proof 
of his fame and prosperity at this period in the 
valuable extracts from the manuscript of Desiderio 
Arisi, at Cremona. 

The knowledge Arisi had of Stradivari is shown 
by the following remarks written by him in the year 
1720. He says, " In Cremona is also living my 
intimate friend Antonio Stradivari, an excellent 
maker of all kinds of musical instruments. 1 It 
will not be out of place to make special mention of 
his merits. His fame is unequalled as a maker of 
instruments of the finest qualities, and he has made 
many of extraordinary beauty, which are richly 

1 Mention is made by Lancetti that in the year 1820 the 
Marquis Carlo dal Negro, of Genoa, possessed a Harp bearing 
the name of Stradivari. Mandolines and other stringed 
instruments have been seen with his name attached. 



1 86 THE VIOLIN 

ornamented with small figures, flowers, fruits, 
arabesques, and graceful interlaying of fanciful 
ornaments, all in perfect drawing, which he some- 
times paints in black or inlays with ebony and 
ivory, all of which is executed with the greatest 
skill, rendering them worthy of the exalted person- 
ages to whom they are intended to be presented. I 
have thought proper, therefore, to mention some 
works of this great master, in testimony of the high 
esteem and universal admiration which he enjoys." 
These prefatory remarks of Arisi are followed by 
several important statements, which I have arranged 
in accordance with the different periods it will be 
necessary to refer to in the course of this notice. 
"In the year 1682, on the 8th of September, the 
banker Michele Monzi, of Venice, sent him an 
order for the whole set of Violins, Altos, and 
Violoncellos which that gentleman sent as a present 
to King James of England." : The interesting 
remarks of Arisi with regard to the inlaid instru- 
ments of Stradivari are those we should expect 
from an admirer of delicate artistic work, who pos- 
sessed no special knowledge of Violins as instruments 
of music. The existence of some of the instruments 
to which he refers, together with the tracings of 
the actual designs and the tools with which the 
work was accomplished, render his observations, 
read at this distance of time, peculiarly pleasing. 

1 These instruments were probably sent to England in 1685, 
or later. 





ANTONIO STRADIVARI. Tenor. 

Date 1690. 
(Made for the Grand Duke of Florence.) 

Plate it. 



ANTONIO STRADIVARI. 

1734- 
(LATE GEO. AMES, ESQ.) 



[To face p. 186. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 



187 



The possessor of the models, tools, labels, and 
drawings used by Stradivari is the Marquis Dalla 
Valle, of Casale, to whom they passed by inheri- 
tance from his great-uncle, Count Cozio, who 
purchased them in 1775. 




THE HOUSE OF STRADIVARI, WEST SIDE, PIAZZA ROMA, CREMONA. 

Vincenzo Lancetti, referring to the collection, 
after mention of Stradivari having been buried 
in the Church of S. Domenico, continues, "As 
appears from the correspondence held in 1775, by 



i88 THE VIOLIN 

the said Count Cozio with Antonio's son Paolo 
Stradivari, cloth merchant, when the former bought 
of the latter all the remaining Violins, the forms, 
the patterns, moulds, and drawings of the said cele- 
brated Antonio, as well as those of the Amati, with 
which he enriched his collection." In an article 
published in the " Gazzetta Piedmontese," October, 
1 88 1, upon the occasion of the exhibition, at Milan, 
of the relics of the shop of Stradivari, the writer 
gives the following account of the negotiations : 
"Count Cozio, a great patron, intimate with the 
greatest artists of the period, especially with Rolla, 
purchased, through the instrumentality of the firm of 
merchants, Anselmi di Briata, from Paolo and 
Antonio junior, respectively son and nephew of 
Antonio Stradivari, in 1776, all the tools, drawings, 
labels, &c., which had been used by the celebrated 
Violin-maker, and his heirs, who were desirous 
that nothing belonging to him should remain in 
his native town, as it is inferred, from a curious 
document, hastened to conclude the sale." l It 
is certain, however, that Lancetti received his 

1 Upon reference to the copy of this document (the corre- 
spondence is given in the fourth edition of this work), I find the 
words used by Paolo Stradivari to his correspondents Anselmi 
di Briata run, after commenting upon the price offered, 
" However, to show my desire to please you, and in order 
that not a single thing belonging to my father be left in 
Cremona, &c.," having reference, possibly, to some supposed 
feeling of indifference on the part of the municipal authorities 
towards the memory of Antonio Stradivari, they not having 
secured the moulds, patterns, &c. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 189 

information from the Count himself, and nego- 
tiations were certainly carried on between Paolo and 
the Count, either directly or through his agents, 
Anselmi di Briata. 

The contents of the letters of Paolo and Antonio 
Stradivari junior, which the Marquis Dalla Valle 
has placed at my disposal, serve to explain the two 
different accounts above given. We find that the 
Count had two distinct transactions, directly or 
indirectly, with the family of Stradivari. In 1775 
he purchased the ten instruments made by Antonio 
which remained out of ninety-one (complete and 
partly finished) left by the maker at the time of his 
death in 1737. The payment in connection with 
this transaction was arranged by the banker Carlo 
Carli, which gave rise to the inventory upon which 
M. Fe"tis based his statement as to the age of 
Stradivari. In the month of May, 1776, negotia- 
tions were entered upon with Paolo Stradivari, 
relative to the tools, which led to their being sold. 
During their progress Paolo died, October, 1776, 
and the business was left for his son Antonio to 
complete in December, 1776. The copies of the 
letters written by Paolo and Antonio Stradivari are 
given in the fourth edition of this work, and the 
chief part of the matter therein is referred to in the 
Section, "The Violin and its Votaries." 

The next period to be noticed relative to the 
work of Stradivari is that dating from 1686 to 1694. 
We here observe a marked advance in every parti- 



190 THE VIOLIN 

cular. The form is flatter, the arching differently 
treated. The sound-hole, which is a masterpiece 
of gracefulness, reclines more. The curves of the 
middle bouts are more extended than in this 
maker's later instruments. The corners are 
brought out, though not prominently so. Here, 
too, we notice the change in the formation of the 
scroll. He suddenly leaves the form that he had 
hitherto imitated, and follows the dictates of his 
own fancy. The result is bold and striking, and 
foreshadows much of the character belonging to 
the bodies of the instruments of his latter period, 
and though it may seem daring and presumptuous 
criticism, I have often been impressed with the idea 
that these scrolls would have been more in harmony 
with his later works than those to which they 
belong. The varnish on the instruments belonging 
to the period under consideration is very varied. 
Sometimes it is of a rich golden colour, deliciously 
soft and transparent ; in other instances he has 
used varnish of a deeper hue, which might be 
described as light red, the quality of which is also 
very beautiful. The purfling is a trifle wider, but 
narrower than that afterwards used. 

From the Arisi MSS. we have the following 
interesting information relative to this period : 

"In the year 1685, on the i2th of March, 
Cardinal Orsini, Archbishop of Benevento, 1 ordered 

1 Vincenzo Maria Orsini (of the illustrious family of the 
Orsinis, Dukes of Gravina), born 1648, in the Neapolitan 

" 



ITALIAN MAKERS 191 

a Violoncello and two Violins, which were sent as a 
present to the Duke of Natalona, in Spain. The 
Cardinal, besides paying liberally for the work, 
wrote an appreciative acknowledgment of their 
merits, and appointed the artist to the place of one 
of his private attendants." It may be remarked that 
the honour conferred upon Stradivari was equivalent 
to appointing him maker to the Archbishop. 

" In the same year, on the i2th of September, 
Bartolomeo Grandi, called II Fassina, leader of the 
Court Orchestra of His Royal Highness the Duke 
of Savoy, 1 ordered of Stradivari a whole set of 
instruments for the Court Orchestra." 

" In the year 1686, on the 5th of April, His 
Serene Highness the Duke of Modena (Francesco 
II. D'Este was then twenty-six years of age) 
ordered a Violoncello, which, by special invitation, 
Stradivari was requested to take to the Duke 
himself, who told him how pleased he was to make 

province of Bari, was a learned professor of theology, and 
visited, between 1668 and 1672, several cities and towns, 
among others Naples, Bologna, Venice, Brescia, and most 
likely Cremona, where he held conferences, which were 
largely attended. He was created a Cardinal by Clement X., 
in 1672, Archbishop in 1675 in Manfredonia, in 1680 to 
Cesena, in 1686 to Benevento and Porto. In 1724 he was 
elected Pope, under the name of Benedict XIII., and 
remained on the Pontifical throne until February, 1730, 
when he died, aged eighty-one. 

1 Victor Amadeus II., Duke of Savoy and King of Sardinia, 
was the Prince for whom Bartolomeo Grandi ordered the 
concerto of instruments. 



192 THE .VIOLIN 

his personal acquaintance, praised greatly his work, 
and beyond the sum agreed paid him thirty pistoles 
(golden Spanish) as a present." 

On the 22nd of August, 1686, Marquis Michele 
Rodeschini ordered a Viol da Gamba to be sent to 
King James II. of England. 

In the year 1687 he made the set of instruments 
for the Spanish Court, inlaid with ivory, and having 
a beautiful scroll work running round the sides and 
scroll. Arisi evidently refers to this event in the 
following extract : "On the iQth of January, 1687, 
the Marquis Niccolo Rota ordered a Violoncello for 
the King of Spain." One of the Violins of this set 
was purchased in Madrid about thirty years since 
by Ole Bull. The Tenor belonging to this quatuor 
has lost its ivory work, a blemish which is to be 
regretted. He also made, about this period, some 
very small Violins with similar designs, instruments 
evidently made to order. 

"On the 7th of August of the same year, 1687, the 
nobleman Don Agostino Daria, General-in-Chief of 
the Spanish Cavalry in Lombardy, while he was resid- 
ing in Cremona, obtained from him a Violoncello." 

We now reach the year 1690, in connection with 
which Arisi has supplied information of singular 
interest. He says : " On the igth of September, 
1690, Stradivari received the following letter from 
the Marquis Bartolomeo Ariberti, 1 a Cremonese 

1 The Marquis of Ariberti was born in 1666, and died 1724. 
He was an elegant writer, and a member of several literary 



ITALIAN MAKERS 193 

nobleman ' The other day I made a present of the 
two Violins and the Violoncello which you made for 
me to His Highness the Prince of Tuscany x ; and 
I assure you, to my great satisfaction, he has 
accepted them with such pleasure that more I could 
not expect. The members of his orchestra and 
he possesses a select number were unanimous in 
expressing their great appreciation, declaring the 
instruments quite perfect, and, above all, exclaiming 
with one voice that they had never heard a Violon- 
cello with such an agreeable tone. For the highly 
flattering reception with which my present has been 
received by His Highness, and which I cannot 
sufficiently describe, I am principally indebted to 
the care which you have used in the manufacture of 

academies. He was for some time in Tuscany. Upon 
returning to Cremona, where he settled, he built in 1687, 
at his own expense, a theatre called after his own name, 
Ariberti. He, being a passionate lover of music, was anxious 
to have in his own establishment (the theatre adjoining his 
palace) a place of amusement for himself and his family. 
About the year 1710 he gave up the building to a religious 
brotherhood, and a church was built on the site, and used 
until 1798, when the brotherhood was suppressed, and, by 
a singular coincidence, the building was bought in 1801 by a 
society of dramatic authors, and again opened as a theatre, 
which still exists, and is called Teatro Filodrammatico. The 
Marquis Ariberti was appointed by Joseph I., Emperor of 
Austria, to the title of Lieutenant-Marshal ; he was a 
member of the High Council of State in Milan. He was 
buried in the church, which, as above mentioned, was 
afterwards used as a theatre. (See Lancetti, " Biografia 
Cremonese," i vol., Milano, 1819.) 
1 Cosimo III. de Medici. 



IQ4 THE ' VIOLIN 

the instruments. At the same time I hope to have 
by this present shown you my appreciation, and of 
having acquired the merit of practically bringing 
to the knowledge of such a personage the truth of 
your great skill, which will procure you, undoubtedly, 
many orders from this exalted house. To prove 
this, I have now to request you to begin at once 
two Tenors, one Tenor and the other Contralto, 
which are wanted to complete the concerto/ " I 

In the collection of relics of the great master, in 
the possession of the Marquis Dalla Valle, there are 
some items which appear to be connected with this 
most interesting letter : I refer to the designs for a 
case, or cases, for a concerto of instruments dated 
1684, which Stradivari himself describes as being 
for the Grand Duke of Florence. The date upon 
these designs is indicative of the order for the 
Violins and the Violoncellos having been given 
in that year (1684) by the Marquis Ariberti, 
who at the same time gave certain instructions as 
to cases and armorial designs. The completion of 
the order, however, appears to have been delayed, 

1 A chest of Viols, Mace tells us, in his " Mustek's Monu- 
ment," 1676, consisted of two Basses, two Tenors, and two 
Trebles. A Concerto of Violins in Italy, according to the 
letter of Ariberti, consisted of one Bass, two Tenors (Con- 
tralto and Tenor) and two Violins. The term u Concerto " 
was introduced at the beginning of the i7th century, in 
connection with sacred music in parts. These compositions 
were called Church Concertos. Towards the end of the 
I7th century compositions were introduced for instruments 
called Chamber Concertos. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 195 

and the instruments were not delivered until 1690. 
The instructions given in the above letter to Stradi- 
vari to complete the concerto by making the Tenors 
(the patterns of which are among those in the 
possession of the Marquis Dalla Valle, signed, and 
dated 1690), and the existence of the Violoncello 
and one of the Tenors at Florence, dated 1690, 
are confirmatory of the opinion that the order was 
executed in 1690. The following inscription, under 
the left shoulder or side, is in the Tenor : " Prima 
20 Ottobre 1690 per S. A. Da Fiorenza." It is 
interesting to find that the Grand Duke also 
possessed a Stradivari Violin, dated 1716, which 
is in Florence, together with the instruments above 
referred to. It is therefore evident that the belief 
of the Marquis that Stradivari would receive 
further orders from the Grand Duke was realised. 
Between the years 1690 and 1700 Stradivari 
made, together with the form of instrument just 
described, that known to connoisseurs as the 
"long Strad." We have here quite a differently 
constructed instrument ; it is less graceful, although 
there is no absence of the masterly hand throughout 
the work. It has received the title of "long 
Strad " from its increased length, as the name 
would imply. 1 

1 The usual length measurements of the various patterns 
are as under : 

(1) u Amatise," 13$ inches. 

(2) " Long Strad," 14^ (occasionally 14^) inches. 

(3) u Grand pattern," 14 to i4 T V inches. EDITORS. 



196 THE VIOLIN 

Fortified with the experience which the variously 
constructed instruments referred to had enabled 
him to gather, he would seem to have marshalled 
all his forces in order to enter on an entirely new 
campaign, one that should be alike glorious to 
himself and his art. That he succeeded in achiev- 
ing all that he could have desired, my readers will 
have an opportunity of judging by the evidence 
I propose to offer. It was about the year 1700 
when Stradivari entered upon a new era in his art. 
All his past labours appear to have been only 
measures preliminary to that which he proposed 
afterwards to accomplish, and were made for the 
purpose of testing, to the minutest degree, the 
effect of particular modifications in the form and 
thickness- of his works. 

If we stay to consider for a moment the field of 
research traversed by Stradivari before entering 
upon what may be not inaptly named the golden 
period of his life, artistically considered, we shall be 
better enabled to appreciate his labours. 

Starting from the days when he left the workshop 
of Niccolo Amati, we find him following implicitly 
in the footsteps of his master. About 1686 he 
makes use of the more commendable points belong- 
ing to the works of former years, adding others of 
great beauty and utility. At this period he begins 
to make his originality felt, continuing in this vein, 
with but little intermission, down to about the year 
1690, when he again gives forth fresh evidence of 



ITALIAN MAKERS 197 

his power to create, as shown in the " long Strad." 
In expending his powers on those instruments of 
varied proportions, it might occur to the mind of 
the observer that he was undoing much that he 
had accomplished ; but I do not consider that such 
was the case. His project in making these instru- 
ments together with those of larger dimensions, 
evidences, in my opinion, a desire that he had of 
fairly testing the result of changed methods of 
construction. The marked variety of his work 
about this period of his life, I cannot' but regard 
as sufficient proof of the tentative character of 
the steps he was taking in his art. 

From this brief summary of the varied styles 
given to the works of this true artist, the reader 
may gather some idea of the solidity of the founda- 
tion which he laid, before trusting himself to raise 
those works which have become monuments to 
his memory. 

That which I have termed the golden period 
of Stradivari, commenced about 1700, at which 
time he reached his 56th year : a time of life when 
it is a rare occurrence to find genius asserting 
itself with any degree of power a time, if not 
of waning, at least of resting, when the mind 
usually stays from giving forth originality bearing 
the freshness of earlier years ; but Stradivari, with 
a few other notable instances in the field of art, 
forms an exception to this rule, and he proves 
to us that his talent was then in its full vigour, 



198 THE VIOLIN 

and ripe for new achievements. George Eliot's 
fancy well contrasts the painter Naldo 

" Knowing all tricks of style at thirty-one, 
And weary of them ; while Antonio 
At sixty-nine wrought placidly his best" 

From about 1700 his instruments show to us 
much of that which follows later. The outline 
is changed, but the curves, blending one with 
another, are beautiful in the extreme. The corners 
are treated differently. The wood used for the 
backs and sides is most handsome, having a broad 
curl. The scrolls are of bold conception, and finely 
executed. The varnish also is very rich, and 
leaves nothing to be desired. 

It is not possible to convey to the reader, by 
means of mere description, anything approaching 
an adequate notion of the surpassing gracefulness 
of the entire work of this epoch. The eye must 
be made the channel to the mind. If the work 
is present, then, with the aid which these remarks 
will afford, the reader may gain, by careful study, 
much valuable insight into the beauties and genius 
of this famous artist, together with much useful 
information. 

But during this period of his maturity, even, 
we find that Stradivari did not absolutely confine 
himself to making instruments as near as possible 
alike ; on the contrary, it is easy to point out 
certain variations, the meaning of which he doubt- 



ITALIAN MAKERS 199 

less well understood. We find him guided 
throughout this period by his usual ideas as regards 
grandeur of outline and degrees of thickness ; but 
the rotundity of the model, the shape that he 
gave to the sound-hole, the method of setting 
the sound-hole in the instrument, although, as 
before remarked, all executed with a breadth of 
purpose which his earlier efforts fail to show, may 
be cited as points in which he varied. I have 
no hesitation in hazarding an explanation of the 
reasons that prompted him to these differences 
of construction. It is my firm conviction that 
these great makers had certain guiding principles 
as regards the nature and qualities of the wood 
they used, and that Stradivari, in particular, made 
the subject a special study. If this be granted, 
I do not think there is any great difficulty in 
understanding the meaning of the differences 
pointed out. If Stradivari constructed his instru- 
ments upon philosophical principles, the chief 
element of variation in the treatment of any 
particular instrument must have been the differ- 
ence of quality in the material ; it is evident that 
a method eminently successful when applied to 
wood of a certain texture and character, would 
ensure as eminent a failure if applied indiscrimi- 
nately in all cases. To obtain wood sufficient for 
two bellies that should be alike in every particular 
is impossible, though cuttings should be made 
from the same piece ; and we find that the more 



200 THE VIOLIN 

the material varies in its nature, so much the 
greater the variations a fact which helps the 
view advanced considerably. In another place I 
have stated that scarcity of sycamore in the days 
of these old makers is impossible to understand, 
but scarcity of a particular kind of sycamore is 
easy to comprehend. He might have had a cart- 
load of wood handsome in appearance ; but hand- 
some wood combined with acoustical properties 
he deemed needful, was another matter. With 
what extraordinary care he permitted himself to 
use the lovely wood he did possess ! There are 
several instances where he has used, during one 
year, four or five distinct cuttings of wood, more 
particularly as regards the sycamore. These 
several cuttings include often the handsomest arid 
the plainest. A year or so later we find him again 
making use of wood from the same cuttings, 
which proves satisfactorily that he did not work 
up one piece before commencing with another. 
He would seem to have kept back the handsomest 
wood for certain important commissions. I have 
seen three Stradivari Violins of 1714, with backs 
having but little figure, yet this was the year in 
which he made the " Dolphin," which is regarded 
by the chief connoisseurs in Europe as a chef- 
d'oeuvre of Stradivari. From the days when it 
was in the possession of the Marquis de la Rosa 
to the present time, its beauty has excited the 
admiration of the Fiddle world. The splendour 



ITALIAN MAKERS 201 

of the wood is unsurpassed in any Violin, ancient 
or modern, and it was named the " Dolphin " 
from the richness and variety of the tints it gives 
to the varnish. The model is perfection ; its 
solidity of construction and glorious varnish all tend 
to make it unique. Its beauty is of a kind that 
does not require the eye of the skilled connoisseur 
to recognise it ; it causes those to exclaim whose 
knowledge is limited to being aware that it is 
a Fiddle. His making this superb work of art 
in the same year in which he made instruments 
having wood quite opposite in figure, bears out, 
I consider, what I have before stated, viz., that 
Stradivari jealously guarded the material he pos- 
sessed having both handsome figure and valuable 
acoustical properties. Mr. Charles Reade says of 
these " Strads " : "When a red Stradivari Violin 
is made of soft, velvety wood, and the varnish is 
just half worn off the back in a rough triangular 
form, that produces a certain beauty of light and 
shade which is, in my opinion, the ne plus ultra. 
These Violins are rare ; I never had but two in 
my life." 

It is conceivable that a manufacture so success- 
ful as Violin-making proves itself to have been 
in Italy during the seventeenth and part of the 
eighteenth centuries, should give rise to scientific 
inquiry, in order to discover the reason of the 
excellence of the best Italian instruments, and, 
if possible, the principles or laws which guided 



202 THE VIOLIN 

the makers in the exercise of their genius. That 
investigations of this character should be attended 
with important results in connection with the 
science of acoustics, is to be expected. As to 
laws or principles of a scientific character, I doubt 
whether such were recognised or understood when 
the excellence of the manufacture was greatest, 
believing that Violin makers of the order of 
Stradivari must be like poets, " born artificers, 
not made." The chief merits of Stradivari and 
his contemporary makers were intuitive. Their 
rules, having their origin in experience, were 
applied as dictated by their marvellous sense of 
touch and cunning, with results infinitely superior 
to any obtained with the aid of the most approved 
mechanical contrivances. When to these consi- 
derations we add that devotedness of purpose, 
without which nothing really great in art has been 
accomplished, we have a catalogue of excellences 
sufficient to account for the greatness of their 
achievements. 

Turning again to the manuscript of Arisi, we 
find that "On the i2thof May, 1701, Don Antonio 
Cavezudo, leader of the private orchestra of King 
Charles II. of Spain, wrote a highly complimentary 
letter to Stradivari from Madrid, assuring him 
that though he had received bow instruments 
from several makers, for different courts, yet 
he had never been able to obtain them of 
such a refined and beautiful tone as those 



ITALIAN MAKERS 203 

made by him." Arisi adds that Don Antonio 
Cavezudo was also in the service of the Duke 
of Anjou. 

M. Fe"tis, in his notice of Stradivari, 1 remarks : 
" The life of Antonio Stradivari was as tranquil 
as his. calling was peaceful. The year 1702, alone, 
must have caused him much disquiet, when, during 
the war concerning the succession, the city of 
Cremona was taken by Marshal Villeroy, retaken 
by Prince Eugene, and finally taken a third time 
by the French ; but after that period Italy enjoyed 
a long tranquillity, in which the old age of the 
artist glided peacefully away." 

A campaign had taken place in Italy in 1701, 
when Prince Eugene, with thirty thousand troops, 
out-generalled Catinat, the able French commander, 
giving Louis XIV. the opportunity of placing the 
empty and presumptuous Villeroy in command. 
Prince Eugene had greatly harassed the French 
in Italy, when, in the night of February i, 
1702, he surprised the French garrison of Cremona, 
and, though momentarily successful, "missed the 
town," as Eugene said, " by a quarter of an hour," 
but carried off the Commander-in-Chief, Villeroy, 
which the popular song-writers of the day construed 
into " a double gain to France" Cremona saved, 
and Villeroy lost. 

It is conceivable that Stradivari, together with 

1 " Notice of Anthony Stradivari," by F. J. Fetis, translated 
by John Bishop. 1864. 



204 THE VIOLIN 

his fellow-citizens, witnessed during the year 1702 
more of the pomp of war than was agreeable. 
The blowing of trumpets, the beating of drums, 
and other martial sounds, would be music not 
likely to touch pleasantly the ears of Stradivari, 
apart from the discomfort attendant on military 
occupation. He, however, appears to have prac- 
tised his art with undiminished zeal, judging from 
the following interesting information given by 
Arisi. He says : " Stradivari made a complete 
set of bow instruments, which he intended to 
present to Philip V. of Spain, on the occasion 
of the passage of the King through Cremona ; and 
he had prepared a memorial to that effect ; but 
he was dissuaded, and the instruments are still 
in his possession." 

No date is supplied with regard to the events 
above named ; we are therefore left to assign the 
period when the presentation was to have taken 
place by reference to other sources of information. 
In an official diary of the journey of Philip V. to 
Italy 1 it appears that the King arrived in Lom- 
bardy on the loth of June, 1702, and that from 
Milan he went to Lodi on the ist of July, and 
made his entry into Cremona two days later, July 
the 3rd, at one o'clock in the afternoon. Philip 
remained several days in the town, receiving visits 

1 Contained in the work of Don A. de Ubilla y Medina, 
Marquis de Ribas, entitled, " Succession de el Rey D. Philipe 
V. ; Diario de sus Viages, &c." Madrid, 1704, fol. 



ITALIAN MAKERS 205 

from the Dukes of Parma and of Mantua, and 
held there several councils of war with the generals, 
of the allied armies (Spanish and French), and 
appears to have left Cremona on the 2Oth of July 
for the seat of war near Mantua. After the vic- 
tories of Luzzara and Guastalla, the King passed 
again through Cremona, arriving there on the 
3rd of October, staying one night, and leaving the 
following day for Milan. On this occasion there 
was much festivity on account of the victories, and 
the King distributed sums of money and presents 
for the wounded, the officers, and the generals. 
It would therefore appear that Stradivari pur- 
posed presenting the instruments to Philip either 
in July or October, 1702. The condition of 
affairs at Cremona at this period apparently 
serves to explain the cause of Stradivari having 
been dissuaded from presenting the instruments. 

"On the loth of November, 1702, the Marquis 
Giovanni Battista Toralba, General of Cavalry and 
Governor of Cremona, sent for Stradivari, and, 
after complimenting him on his peculiar genius, 
ordered two Violins and a Violoncello, which were 
afterwards sent as a present to the Duke of Alba. 

"In the year 1707, the Marquis Desiderio Cleri 
wrote to Stradivari, by order of King Charles III. 
of Spain, from Barcelona, ordering for the royal 
orchestra six Violins, two Tenors, and one Violon- 
cello." 

This extract refers to the Archduke Charles of 



206 THE VIOLIN 

Austria, afterwards Emperor Charles VI. Charles 
III., aided by the British fleet, occupied Barcelona 
in 1706. We have, therefore, the interesting facts 
that Stradivari made a complete set of instruments 
which he intended to present to Philip V., and 
that he was afterwards commissioned to make 
another set for Philip's opponent, the Archduke. 

Lorenzo Giustiniani, a Venetian nobleman, wrote 
to Stradivari the following letter, which he received 
July 7, 1716 : 

" Venice, Giustiniani Palace, 

" Campiello dei Squellini. 

"It is generally known that there is not at the 
present time in the world a more skilled maker 
of musical instruments than yourself; and as 
I wish to preserve a record of such an 
illustrious man and famous artist, I trouble 
you with this letter, to ask whether you 
feel disposed to make me a Violin, of the 
highest quality and finish that you can bestow 
upon it." 

The following extract from Arisi's manuscript 
brings us to the end of the interesting information 
therein contained in reference to the subject of 
this notice, and amply justifies the closing words 
of the author, who says : " From what I have 
written it may be seen how great is the excellence 
of Stradivari's art." 



ITALIAN MAKERS 207 

"In 1715, on the loth of June, Giovanni 
Battista Voleme, director of the private orchestra 
of the King of Poland, arrived in Cremona, 
by special order of the King, to await 
the completion of twelve Violins, which had 
been ordered of Stradivari, and he remained 
here three months ; and when all the instru- 
ments were ready, he took them with him to 
Poland." 

Arisi doubtless refers to the Belgian musician 
Jean Baptiste Volumier, who was musical director 
to Augustus, Elector of Saxony and King of 
Poland, famous as a patron of music and the arts. 
It was Augustus who appointed Francesco Maria 
Veracini as his solo Violinist in 1720, and on the 
title-page of the charming Sonatas of Veracini we 
read 

" Dedicata 

a sua Altezza Reale, 
il Serenissimo Principe Reale di Pollonia 

et Elettorale di Sassonia. 

Francesco Maria Veracini Fiorentino 

Compositore di Camera di sua Maesta." 

The blending of the names of Stradivari, Augus- 
tus, and Veracini, serves to carry our thoughts 
into channels overflowing with interesting musical 
records. Voleme (Volumier) is said to have taken 
the instruments from Cremona to Poland. It 



208 THE VIOLIN 

would therefore appear that the Royal Orchestra 
was then stationed at Warsaw, the Court Musicians 
having to divide their time between that city and 
Dresden. In these capitals Jean Baptiste Volumier 
directed the music of the Elector Augustus from 
the year 1706 to 1728. Veracini was appointed 
solo Violinist in 1720 to Augustus, and the 
instruments which Stradivari made for the King 
were, therefore, only five years old. Though new, 
their tones were doubtless rich and beautiful. 
Veracini, it may be assumed, saw, heard, and 
played upon these comparatively new Stradivari 
Violins. He, however, whilst fully alive to their 
sterling merits, played, in all probability, upon his 
Stainers, which he named "St. Peter" and "Si 
Paul," with more pleasure, from their being 
thoroughly matured. The order given by Augus- 
tus to Stradivari, and the King's determination 
to have it executed, throws a strong side-light 
on the lofty position held by Stradivari as 
maker of Violins. It also appears to furnish, ii 
some measure, an explanation of the length of 
time he took to execute the order given by the 
Marquis Ariberti. We have here an artist of 
European celebrity, who was incapable of executing 
indifferent work. Commissions flowed from the 
chief courts faster than they could be executed. 
The genius of Stradivari could not but be true 
to itself. He- scorned to sacrifice quality at the 
shrine of quantity. His patrons had, therefore, to 



ITALIAN MAKERS 209 

wait patiently for their instruments, though it might 
be for years. The Elector of Saxony was 
evidently resolved upon securing his Violins, and 
it cannot be denied that the measures he adopted 
to accomplish his purpose did credit to his per- 
severance, and reflected honour on the Raphael 
of Violin-making. 

Passing to the last period of this great maker, 
we enter upon the consideration of a set of 
instruments very distinct from those of an earlier 
date, and which have given rise to a great diver- 
gence of opinion. Some have gone to the extent 
of denying the authenticity of these works, as far 
as they relate to Stradivari; others, again, admit 
that portions of these instruments are from his 
hand, and finished by his sons or Carlo Bergonzi. 
There are, doubtless, many exceedingly crude- 
looking instruments passing under his name, 
bearing dates ranging from 1730 to 1737, in the 
making of which he has taken no part ; but, on 
the other hand, to deny that there are any works 
of Stradivari having these dates is to deny 
established facts. He must be an ill-informed 
judge of Violins who fails to recognise the hand 
of the master in several splendid specimens of 
this period. The rich oil varnish with which 
they are covered is precisely the same in quality 
as that found upon the instruments belonging to 
other periods, and which he used without excep- 
tion throughout his career. It is, perhaps, laid on 

p 



2io THE VIOLIN 

less carefully, and its colour is more varied. In 
some instances it is brown, and in others light 
red, the tone of colour varying according to the 
number of coats. He seems to have used, gene- 
rally, more varnish upon these instruments than 
on his earlier ones. The thickness of the coats 
is seen in those parts (on the back in particular, 
where the varnish is worn and broken, caused, in 
all cases, by the shoulder of the player and the 
lining of the case upon which the back rests. It 
must be borne in mind that Stradivari had reached 
a great age when he made these instruments, and 
he evidently felt proud of his ability to continue 
his artistic labours after passing his ninetieth 
year, from the number of Violins wherein, in his 
own handwriting, he proclaimed himself a nona- 
genarian. It would not be reasonable to expect 
to find so high a finish as in the instruments 
made from 1700 to 1725, but even in these there 
is a finish distinct from that of either his sons or 
Bergonzi. But, beyond this, there is recognisable 
the splendid form, the masterly scroll, and the 
perfect sound-hole. To say that Omobono Stradi- 
vari, Francesco Stradivari, or Carlo Bergonzi had 
any share in these notable works, evidences hasty 
judgment, if not ignorance of the style of those 
makers to whom these instruments are attributed. 
The work of Carlo Bergonzi is now pretty well 
understood ; in England, particularly, we have 
some glorious specimens. I need only ask the 



ITALIAN MAKERS 211 

unbiassed connoisseur if he can reconcile one of 
these instruments with those of Stradivari of the 
period named. I have no hesitation in saying 
that there is not a single feature in common. The 
work of the sons of Stradivari is less known, but 
it is as characteristic as that of Bergonzi, and 
quite as distinct from that of their father, if not 
more so. The outline is rugged, the modelling 
distinct, the scroll, a ponderous piece of carving, 
quite foreign to Stradivari the elder, and the var- 
nish, though good, is totally different from the 
superb coats found on the father's works of late 
date. 

The division of the work of Stradivari into 
periods makes the reader more acquainted with 
the maker's style. It must be remembered, how- 
ever, that he did not strictly confine himself to 
making instruments wholly of one pattern at any 
time, although he certainly did so with but few 
exceptions until the last period, when, as Lancetti 
rightly observes, he used more frequently his 
earlier patterns. 

The exact spot where Stradivari was buried 
was made known by the researches of Signer 
Sacchi, a Cremonese conversant with the annals 
of his native city. 1 This was an interesting ad- 
dition to the meagre information previously 

1 u The Orchestra " of July 15, 1870, contains a notice 
relative to the circumstance, entitled "The Tomb of 
Stradivari." 



212 THE VIOLIN 

handed down to us touching Stradivari. It had 
long been known that a family grave was pur- 
chased by Stradivari in the church of San 
Domenico, in the year 1729 : but in the certifi- 
cates from the Cathedral of Cremona it is stated 
that he was buried in the tomb of Francesco 
Villani, no mention being made of San Domenico. 
The exact words are, "Buried in the Chapel of 
the Rosary, in the parish of St. Matthew." The 
omission of the name of the church wherein this 
chapel stood has led to the belief that the pre- 
cise spot where the mortal remains of Stradivari 
rest was unknown. Signer Sacchi finds that the 
historians of Cremona (but especially Panni, in 
his " Report on the Churches of Cremona, 
1762") mention that the Church of San Do- 
menico was in the parish of St. Matthew, and 
that the only chapel known by the name of 
" The Rosary " was the third on the right, 
entering the Church of San Domenico. 

An important point is mentioned by the his- 
torian above quoted, viz., that about the year 
1720 the Parish Church of St. Matthew being 
judged too full to allow of further burials in its 
interior, the Church of San Domenico (its sub- 
sidiary church) was chosen as a place of burial 
for the parishioners, for which purpose it was 
used down to about 1780, and that Stradivari 
purchased there the grave mentioned. This state- 
ment is confirmed by the autograph letter of 






Count Cozio di Salabue, of Casale Monferato, 
Piedmont. 
The Church of San Domenico was, in con- 




i. Church of S. Domenico. 2. Chapel of the Rosary. 3. Tomb of 
Stradivari. 4. Church of St. Matthew (since 1820 the Post Office, the 
church having been profaned in 1808 by the French). 5. Convent of 
the Dominican Friars. 6. House of Stradivari. 7. House of 
Bergonzi. 8. House of Guarneri. 9. Tower of the Church of S. 
- Domenico. 10. The Sacristy, n. Shop of Ruggeri (Via dei 
Coltellai). 12-13. Shop of Amati. 14. Shop of Storioni, and after- 
wards that of Ceruti. 

sequence of its decayed condition, demolished 
about the year 1870. Becoming aware of what 



214 THE VIOLIN 

was taking place, I gave instructions that a 
photograph should be taken of the chapel in 
which the body of Stradivari was interred. This 
was accomplished whilst the workmen were in 
the act of levelling the structure, and it has 
been engraved on wood for the purpose of in- 
sertion in this volume. The stone with the 
inscription " Sepolcro di Antonio Stradivari E 
Svoi Eredi Anno 1729," which served to denote 
the spot where the body was buried, is now 
preserved in the Town Hall of Cremona. Signer 
Sacchi remembered it having been placed in the 
corner, close to the steps and iron railing inside 
the third chapel on the right, in the Church of 
San Domenico. 

M. F^tis says of Stradivari, "We know but 
little respecting that uneventful existence. Polledro, 
late first Violin at the Chapel Royal of Turin, 
who died a few years ago, at a very advanced 
age, declared that his master had known Stradivari, 
and that he was fond of talking about him. He 
was, he said, tall and thin, habitually wore, in 
winter, a cap of white wool, and one of cotton 
in summer. He wore over his clothes an apron 
of white leather when he worked, and as he was 
always working, his costume scarcely ever varied. 
He had acquired more than competency by labour 
and economy, for the inhabitants of Cremona 
were accustomed to say, ' As rich as Stradivari ! '" I 
1 "Notice of Anthony Stradivari." 



ITALIAN MAKERS 215 

The house he occupied stands in the Piazza 
Roma, formerly called the Square of San 
Domenico, in the centre of which was the church 
of the same name. The house is still in good 
condition, and is the principal place of interest 
in the old city of Cremona to the many ad- 
mirers of Stradivari who visit the seat of Violin- 
making in olden times. After the death of 
Stradivari it was occupied by his sons Omobono 
and Francesco ; and afterwards by the maker's 
youngest son, Paolo, who carried on there the 
business of a cloth merchant. Stradivari worked 
on the ground floor, and used the upper storey 
for varnishing. 

It is somewhat singular that the Cremonese 
take but little apparent interest in the matter, 
and have expressed themselves as being aston- 
ished at the demonstrations of respect which 
their French and English visitors pay to the 
hallowed spot. The better-informed Cremonese 
have some acquaintance with the name of 
Stradivari ; but to create any enthusiasm among 
them from the fact of his having been a Cre- 
monese, or from the historical associations which 
connect him with that city, would be difficult. 
After the exercise of considerable patience and 
determination, Signer Sacchi, in conjunction with 
a few Cremonese, managed to raise sufficient 
enthusiasm among the inhabitants to permit the 
authorities to name a street after Stradivari, and 



216 THE VIOLIN 

another after Amati. This worthy act was per- 
formed by the late librarian, Professor Pietro 
Fecit, who aided Signor Sacchi in his researches 
in connection with the past of Cremona's Violin- 
makers. 

This street-naming was much opposed at the 
time. The citizens of Cremona are, however, 
not quite singular in this respect. It has been 
remarked that our American friends show far 
greater interest in Stratford-upon-Avon and its 
memories than we ourselves do. I must con- 
fess that I have great respect for the genuine 
enthusiast. 

The Cremonese have scarcely an idea of the 
extent of veneration with which we admirers of 
the art regard their illustrious citizen. They will 
be astonished to hear that " Stradivari " forms 
the Christian name of some Englishmen. A 
well-known dealer, some years since, determined 
to commemorate his admiration for the great 
maker, and, accordingly, named his descendant 
" Stradivari Turner," We have stepped out of 
the ordinary path of house nomenclature, and 
have adopted the cherished name of " Stradivari " 
to the bewilderment of the passer-by, whose 
unmusical soul fails to be impressed by it. To 
crown our seeming eccentricities (in the eyes of 
our Italian friends), I may mention that the 
magic name has found its way into circles where 
little interest is taken in the subject of this 






ITALIAN MAKERS 217 

notice, judging from the following announcement, 
which appeared in the profane pages of a news- 
paper : "Waterloo Purse. E. Mr. Goodlakes 
Gilderoy beat Earl of Stair s Stradivarius, and 
won the Purse-; " the result showing that 
Stradivari was evidently out of place in such 
company. 

STRADIVARI, Francesco, Cremona, 1720-43. 
Son of Antonio Stradivari. Worked with his 

brother Omobono for 

Franciscus Stradivarius Cremonensis , Manv 

Filius Antonii faciebat Anno 1742 

of the later works of 

Antonio Stradivari have been attributed to his 
sons. The character of the work is wholly dis- 
tinct. I can well understand the error of 
attributing the instruments of Francesco Stradivari 
to Carlo Bergonzi, there being many points in 
common, but that so many marked specimens 
of the works of Antonio should be deemed 
apocryphal is beyond my comprehension. The 
work of Francesco is altogether less finished, but 
at the same time it shows the hand of the 
master. The design is bold and original. The 
tone of Francesco's instruments is invariably rich 
and telling. 

Lancetti states speaking of Francesco Stradi- 
vari " After the death of his father, he made 
several Violins and Tenors, to which he put his 
own name. Although he did not succeed in per- 
fectly imitating the works of his father, the instru- 



218 THE VIOLIN 

merits which he made in the years 1740 and 1742, 
and which remained after his death in the posses- 
sion of his brother Paolo, were sold at the same 
price as those of his father, as mentioned in the 
correspondence between Count Cozio and Paolo. 
Francesco died at the end of 1742, the year 
Omobono died, and in which he made the Violins 
bought by Count Cozio." The date of death (as 
given by Lancetti), though incorrect by some 
months he having died May n, 1743, aged 
72 years shows the care and trouble taken to 
render the information as complete as possible, 
these dates having been given without reference 
to registers, but simply as stated by Paolo. 

STRADIVARI, Omobono, Cremona, 1742. Brother 
of Francesco. Lancetti remarks, "Omobono chiefly 

restored instruments 

Omobonus Stradivarius filius Antonii 



arranffed and 
Cremone fecit, Anno 1740. & 

regulated them. 

Francesco, it will be seen, survived his brother 
about thirteen months, and with him, as with Giro- 
lamo Amati, the son of Niccolo, we reach the end 
of the family's long and historical career of Violin- 
making. Upon the death of Francesco, the shop 
in the Piazza San Domenico (now named Piazza. 
Roma) was closed, after having been occupied by 
the family of Stradivari as Violin-makers for 
upwards of sixty-three years. From here were 
sent into cathedral, church, and royal orchestras 
the largest number of Violins and kindred instru- 



ITALIAN MAKERS 219 

ments ever made by one maker instruments 
which bore the indelible stamp of genius and 
have gladdened the sight and hearing of untold 
thousands. The famous shop, as previously noticed, 
was next opened by Paolo Stradivari, who was a 
cloth merchant or warehouseman. Paolo died in 
1776, a year after the date of the correspondence 
which passed between him and Count Cozio di 
Salabue. Antonio, son of Paolo, born in 1738 and 
married in 1762, had a son Giacomo, born in 
1769 and married in 1797. Cesare, the son 
of Giacomo, became a physician in Cremona, 
married in 1838, and left, as the representative of 
the Cremonese branch of the family, Dr. Libero 
Stradivari, a barrister-at-law and an excellent 
performer on the flute. 

SURSANO, Spirito, Coni, 1714-35. 

TANEGIA, Carlo Antonio, Milan, early in the 
1 8th century. 

TANINGARD, Giorgio, Rome, 17 . 

TECCHLER, David, Rome, 1680-1743. A highly 
esteemed maker. He worked in Venice, Salzburg, 

and Rome, chiefly in 

David Tecchler Liutaro the ktter d Hig 

fecit Romae 17 

instruments vary in 

form, some having a marked German style : they 
are high-modelled, and the sound-hole partakes of 
the Stainer character. These were probably made 
in Salzburg, to the order of his patrons. Those 
instruments which date from Rome are chiefly of 



220 THE VIOLIN 

the Italian type, and are so much superior to the 
others that it seems difficult to reconcile varieties 
so distinct as the work of the same man. They 
are finely formed, have splendid wood, and rich 
varnish of a yellow tint ; the bellies are of a mottled 
character, similar to those so much used by Niccol6 
Amati. His Violoncellos are among the finest of 
his instruments. They are mostly of a large size. 

TEDESCO, Leopoldo, pupil of Niccolo Amati. He 
went to Rome. I have seen a Violin of his make 
dated from there 1658. Workmanship a little 
rough, good varnish, Amati outline. 

TESTORE, Carlo Giuseppe, Milan, about 1690 to 
1720. The form resembles that of Guarneri. The 
wood is often plain in figure. 

TESTORE, Carlo Antonio, Milan, about 1730 to 
1764. Son of Giuseppe. Copied Guarneri and 
Amati. These instruments are bold and well made ; 
their tone is excellent ; wood often plain in figure. 

TESTORE, Giovanni, son of Carl'o Antonio. 

TESTORE, Paolo Antonio, Milan, about 1740. 
Brother of Carlo Antonio. Copied Guarneri. The 
varnish is mostly yellow ; frequently unpurfled. 

TIEFFENBRUCKER, Leonardo, Padua, 1587. Lute- 
maker. 

TODINI, Michele, seventeenth century, a native 
of Saluzzo, lived for many years at Rome. 
Todini was the inventor and maker of a great 
number of musical contrivances, in which clock- 
work played an important part. He occupied 



ITALIAN MAKERS 221 

himself with this manufacture for several years, 
and turned his house into a kind of musical 
museum. He published in 1676 a pamphlet 
describing its contents. His name is associated 
with our subject in having adopted a new 
mode of stringing the Violono, or Double- Bass, 
by using four strings, and playing himself upon the 
instrument at oratorio performances in Rome. I 
have mentioned in Section I. that the Violono 
was originally used with several strings five, six, 
or seven and with frets. Todini is therefore 
credited with having introduced the method of 
stringing the Double Bass which led to the conver- 
sion of the old Violonos into Double- Basses fitted 
for modern requirements. 

TONONI, Carlo, Bologna. At the exhibition at 
Milan in 1881, an inlaid Kit, of beautiful workman- 
ship, was exhibited of this maker. 

Carolo Tunonus fecit Bononiae 
in Platea Castaelionis Anno Domini 1698. 

TONONI, Carlo Antonio, Venice, born at Bologna, 
probably a son of the above. The model varies 
very much ; those of the flat pattern are excellent 

instruments. They 

Carolus Tononi Bonon fecit Venetiis afe j an d beau- 

sub Titulo S. Ceciliae Anno 1739. 

tifully made. The 

varnish, though inferior to that of Santo Sera- 
fino, is similar. These Violins are branded above 
the tail-pin. His instruments date from about 1716. 



222 THE VIOLIN 

TONONI, Giovanni, about 1700. Similar cha- 
racteristics. 

TONONI, Felice, Bologna. 

TONONI, Guido, Bologna. 

TOPPANI, Angelo de, Rome, about 1 740. Scarce ; 
workmanship resembles that of Tecchler. 

TORTOBELLO, Francesco, Rome, 16 . Maggini 
characteristics. 

TRAPANI, Raffaele, Naples, about 1800. Large 
pattern ; flat model ; purfling deeply laid ; edges 
sharp ; scroll heavy. 

VALENZANO, Gio. Maria, Rome, 1771 to about 
1830. Neapolitan character; neat work; varnish 
excellent in some specimens, being soft and 
transparent. 

VETRINI, Battista, Brescia, about 1629. Yellow 
varnish of good quality ; handsome wood ; rather 
small. 

VIMERCATI, Paolo, Venice, about 1700. Similar 
to Tononi. Jacob Stainer is said to have worked 
in the shop of Vimercati. 

WENGER, Padua, Lute-maker, 1622. 

ZANNETTO, Pellegrino, Brescia, 1547. M. Chou- 
quet in his "Catalogue Raisonne" of the instru- 
ments at the Conservatoire in Paris, describes a 
six-string Viol da Gamba of this make. 

ZANOLA, Giovanni Battista. Flat model ; rough 
workmanship ; German character. 

Joannes Baptista Zanola, Verona, 17 



ITALIAN MAKERS 223 

ZANOLI, Giacomo, 1740-80. Verona. Worked 
in Venice, Padua, and Verona. Venetian character. 
ZANOTTI, Antonio, Mantua, about 1734. 

Antonius Zanotus, fecit Mantuae, anno 1734. 

ZANTI, Alessandro, Mantua, 1765. He copied 
Pietro Guarneri, but had little knowledge of var- 
nishing, if we are to judge from the few instruments 
of this maker extant. 

ZANURE, Pietro, Brescia, 1509. A maker of 
Viols. 

ZENATTO, Pietro, Treviso, about 1634. 

Pietro Zenatto fece in 
Treviso Anno 1634. 






SECTION VII 
The French School 

" I ^HE French have long occupied a foremost 
-L place in the production of articles needing 
delicate workmanship, and it is therefore not sur- 
prising that they should at an early period have 
turned their attention to the art of Violin-making, 
which requires in a high degree both skilful work- 
manship and artistic treatment. The French 
manufacture of Violins appears to have commenced 
about the same period as the English, viz., in the 
early part of the i7th century, Francois Medard 
and Tywersus being among the French makers, 
and Rayman and Wise their fellows in England. 
The primitive French makers, like their English 
brethren, copied the instruments made at Brescia 
and Cremona, to which course they adhered down 
to the days of Barak Norman, when the two nations 
parted company, as regards having a common 
type, the French continuing the path they had 
hitherto taken, and copying the Italians, with 
scarcely any deviation, to the present time. The 

English left the Italian form for the German one 

224 



THE FRENCH SCHOOL 225 

of Jacob Stainer, which they adopted, with but few 
exceptions, for nearly a century, recovering the 
Italian about the middle of the i8th century. It 
is remarkable that French makers should have 
restrained themselves from following the pattern 
of the famous German maker when his name was 
at its height and his instruments were in such 
demand. That in not adopting the then popular 
form they were rightly guided, experience has clearly 
demonstrated. When we scan the older works the 
French have left us, and consider the advantage 
they had in keeping to the Italian form, we cannot 
but feel disappointed in finding so few meritorious 
instruments among them. There appear to have 
been many makers who were quite unconcerned 
whether their instruments possessed merit becoming 
the productions of a true artist ; their chief aim 
would seem to have been to make in dozens in 
other words, quantity in place of quality. If the 
early French makers are carefully studied, it will 
be seen that Boquay, Pierray, and one or two of 
their pupils are the only makers deserving of praise. 
It must be admitted .that the shortcomings of the 
makers of the first period were adequately supplied 
by those of the second period, which includes the 
king of French artists, Nicolas Lupot. The old 
French school, originating with Tywersus and 
Medard, includes the following makers : Nicolas 
Renault, of Nancy, Medard, also of Nancy, 
Dumesnil, Bertrand, Pierray, Boquay, Gavinies, 

Q 



226 THE VIOLIN 

Chappuy, Ouvrard, Paul Grosset, Despont, Saint- 
Paul, Salomon, Veron, with others of less impor- 
tance. Many of these makers had a fair amount of 
ideas, which, had they been well directed, might 
have led to fame. Others contented themselves 
with copying, without giving any place to their 
fancy. It will be found that many of the instru- 
ments by Boquay, Pierray, and a few others, have 
varnish upon them closely resembling that of the 
Venetian school ; it is full-bodied, very transparent, 
and rich in colour. Many of their works are 
covered with a very inferior quality of varnish, 
which has caused some confusion respecting the 
merit due to them as varnishers, they being fre- 
quently judged by their inferior instruments, with- 
out reference to their good ones. It is evident that 
they made two qualities of varnish, in accordance 
with the price they were to obtain, as was com- 
monly done in England by the Forsters, Banks, 
and Wamsley, where similar confusion exists. Th( 
Italians happily avoided this objectionable practice. 
Their works are of one uniform quality in point 
of varnish. This divergence may possibly be 
accounted for by the difference of climate. Ii 
Italy, oil varnish, judiciously used, would di 
rapidly, whereas in France or England the reverse 
would be the case ; hence its more sparing use. 

We will now glance at the second French School 
of makers, commencing with De Comble. Learn- 
ing his art in Italy, and, it is said, under Stradivari, 



THE FRENCH SCHOOL 227 

he brought to bear a knowledge superior to that 
possessed by the makers mentioned above. The 
form he introduced was seen to be in advance of 
that hitherto met with among the French and 
Belgian makers, and led to its being chiefly 
followed. The next maker was Pique, who made 
Violins and Violas that were excellent in point 
of workmanship, and had he been equally successful 
in varnishing he would probably have been held in 
the same estimation as Nicolas Lupot. From these 
makers sprang quite a little school of its own, 
comprising Francois Gand, in Paris, who succeeded 
to the business of Lupot, and Bernardel, with 
several others less known. Mention must not be 
omitted of another excellent copyist Silvestre, of 
Lyons. He has left some charming specimens of 
his art. They are lighter in character than the 
works of Nicolas Lupot, and resemble the work of 
Stradivari from 1680 to 1710. Every portion of 
the work evidences the skill and judgment of the 
maker. The wood, with scarcely an exception, 
has not been manipulated in order to darken it, 
consequently the instruments become of increasing 
merit as age acts upon them. 

The practice of preparing the wood for Violin- 
making, either by baking it or by the application 
of acids, may be traced, in the first instance, 
to a desire to obtain artificially those results 
which are brought about by the hand of time. 
In obtaining lightness and dryness in new wood, 



228 THE VIOLIN 

it was imagined that the object in view would 
b'e reached without the aid of Dame Nature. 
Experience, however, has shown that Fiddles, 
like all things intended to pass into green old 
age, mature gradually, and are not to be benefited 
by any kind of forcing process. The earliest 
account I have met with of Fiddle-baking 
occurred in England about 150 years since. 
One Jeacocke, a baker by trade, and a lover 
of music by nature, used to bake his Fiddles in 
sawdust for a week whenever their tones showed 
symptoms of not being up to his standard of 
quality. In France the practice may be said to 
have been introduced about eighty years ago, 
with a view of facilitating the creation of such 
mysteries as Duiffoprugcar and Morella Violins, 
baked and browned until they had something 
of a fifteenth-century hue. The same means 
were adopted in the production of instruments 
intended as copies of the works of Stradivari 
and Guarneri. The brown hue of the originals, 
and the worn and broken condition of the 
varnish which comes of age alone, were imitated 
with more or less ingenuity. Happily the error 
is recognised, as far as the best workmanship is 
concerned, in France. The legitimate imitator's art 
no longer includes that of depicting wear and brown- 
ness, rendering abortive so much excellent work. 

It only remains now to mention Salle, 
Vuillaume, Chanot, Gand, Germain, Mennegand, 



THE FRENCH SCHOOL 229 

Gaillard, and Miremont, all copyists of more or 
less note, who may be said to complete the 
modern French school. These makers are or 
were the chief manufacturers of Violins in 
France of a better class. Those made by 
thousands yearly at Mirecourt are not Violins 
in the eyes of the connoisseur. They are 
made, as common cabinet work is produced 
in England, by several workmen, each taking 
a portion, one making the backs, another the 
sides, another the bellies, and so on with the 
other parts of the instrument, the whole being 
finally arranged by a finisher. Such work must 
necessarily be void of any artistic nature ; 
they are like instruments made in a mould, 
not on a mould, so painfully are they alike. 
This Manchester of Fiddle-making has doubtless 
been called into being by the great demand 
for cheap instruments, and has answered thus far 
its purpose, but it has certainly helped to 
destroy the gallant little bands of makers who 
rere once common in France, Germany, and 
England, among whom were men who were 
lided by reverential feelings for the art, irrespec- 
ive of the gains they reaped by their labours, 
'he number of instruments yearly made in 
[irecourt and Saxony I amounts to many thou- 

Germany's yearly output of such instruments is enor 
lous, the principal seats of manufacture being Mark- 
leukirchen (Saxony) and Mittenwald (Bavaria). 



230 THE, VIOLIN 

sands, and is yearly increasing. They send forth 
repeated copies of Amati, Maggini, Guarneri, and 
Stradivari, all duly labelled and dated, to all 
parts of the world, frequently disappointing their 
simple-minded purchasers, who fondly fancy they 
have thus become possessed of the real article 
at the trifling cost of a few pounds. They 
produce various kinds of modern antiques in 
Violins, some of which display an amount of 
ingenuity worthy of being exercised in a better 
cause ; but usually the whole thing is over- 
done, and the results, in point of tone, are 
far more disastrous than in the common French 
copies. The following list of French, Belgian, 
and Dutch makers contains many names not 
included in the first edition of this book. The 
works wherein several of these names occur are 
M. J. Gallay's, " Les Luthiers Italiens aux if' eme 
et i8^ me Siecles," 1869 ; M. Fetis, " Biographic 
Universelle des Musiciens ; " M. Vidal, " Les 
Instruments a Archet," 1876; the "Catalogue 
Raisonne*, " of the instruments at the Con- 
servatoire, by Gustave Chouquet, Paris, 1875 ; 
" Recherches sur les facteurs de Clavecins," by 
M. le Chevalier de Burbure, Antwerp, 1863 ; 
Pougin's " Supplement to the Dictionary of 
Fetis ; " and Mendel's " Musikalisches Con- 
versations- Lexikon," 1880. 



SECTION VIII 



French Makers 

A LDRIC, Paris, 1790-1844. Copied Stradivari 
/~\ -with great skill. He was also well known 
as a dealer in Cremonese instruments. He was 
one of the earliest French makers who dealt with 
Luigi Tarisio, the famous Italian connoisseur. He 
generally used a red varnish of good quality. 

ALLAR, , Paris, 1788. 

AMELOT, , Lorient, worked early in the pre- 
sent century. He used a highly ornamented label. 

AUBRY, , Paris, 1840. Succeeded his uncle 

Aldric, mentioned above. 

AUGIERE, , Paris, about 1830, was established 

in the Rue Saint Eustache, in partnership with 
Calot, and made some good. instruments. Augiere 
formerly worked in the shop of Clement of Paris. 

BACHELIER, , Paris, 1788. 

BASSOT, , Paris, 1788. 

BERNARDEL, Auguste Sebastien Philippe, born at 
Mirecourt in 1802, was in the workshop of Lupot, 
in Paris. The instruments of this maker are 



232 THE VIOLIN 

excellently made, and the wood judiciously selected. 
He took his sons into partnership in 1859 and 
retired from business in 1866. He died in 1870. 
His sons, Ernst Auguste and Gustave Adolphe, 
were in partnership with Eugene Gand, and the 
firm was known as " Gand et Bernardel freres." 

BERTRAND, Nicolas, Paris, about 1700 to 1735, 
used varnish of a superior kind. He made many 
of the Viols of the type common in Paris, for 
some time after the Violin had been introduced ; 
they were named Dessus-de-Viole, Pardessus, 
Quinton, and Viole-haut-contre. His name is often 
seen branded on the backs of his instruments, inside. 

BOIVIN, Claude, about 1749, Paris. M. Chouquet, 
in his " Catalogue Raisonn^ " of the instruments 
at the Paris Conservatoire, described a Guitar by 
this maker, made for a daughter of Louis XV. 

BOQUAY, Jacques, Paris, 1700-1730. One of 
the first of the old French school. He, with a 

few of his contem- 

Jacques Boquay, pO raries, inherited a 

rue dArgenteuil, a Pans, 1723. r 

good amount of the 

Italian character of workmanship, introduced prob- 
ably into France by Nicolas Renault. Boquay, with 
others whose names are mentioned in this list of 
French makers, used varnish closely allied to that of 
Cremona ; its colour is a warm brown, very trans- 
parent, and of a soft nature. He made many instru- 
ments of small size. The model is often that of 
Girolamo Amati, but slightly more arched ; the 



FRENCH MAKERS 233 

sound-hole is more rounded and less striking. The 
scroll can scarcely be considered a copy of Girolamo 
Amati's ; it is well cut, but lacks the peculiar grace of 
the Italian. The tone is sweet, without much power. 

BORLON, Artus or Arnold, about 1579, Antwerp, 
maker of stringed instruments (mentioned in the 
pamphlet by M. le Chevalier de Burbure). 

BORLON, or PORLON, Pierre, Antwerp, about 
1647, of whom M. de Burbure says : " Pierre Borlon, 
or Porlon, made in the year 1647 a Double- Bass 
for the orchestra of the Cathedral (Antwerp). The 
instrument is in existence, and inside is the name 
' Peeter Porlon tot, Antwerpen f. 1647.'" The 
same author mentions another early Double-Bass 
made in 1636 by Maitre Daniel for a chapel in 
Antwerp, and remarks, in passing, that in other 
countries the Double- Bass was not used until 
about half a century later. The question of priority 
in this matter is important and interesting ; but 
in order to arrive at a satisfactory conclusion, it 
is necessary to be certain that these Belgian Basses 
are not, together with the Brescian and others, 
converted Viols. 

BORLON, Joannes, Antwerp, also a maker of Viols. 

BORLON, Fra^ois, Antwerp, Viol-maker. 

BOULLANGIER, C., 1823-1888. Worked in Paris, 
ind for the late Mr. Withers. Was in business 
for many years in Frith Street, Soho, and has 
lade many excellent instruments. 

BOUMEESTER, Amsterdam, about 1650. 



234 TH E VIOLIN 

BOURDET, Se'bastien, Mirecourt, one of the ear- 
liest Violin-makers in Mirecourt. 

BOURDET, Jacques, Paris, 1751. 

Boussu, Eterbeck, le Bruxelles, about 1750. 

BRETON, 1777. This name is met- with branded 
on the backs, " Breton a Paris." A little heavy 
in character, but fairly made ; dark brown colour. 

BRETON, Le, Mirecourt, 1812-30. Common- 
place instruments. Large pattern, usually stamped 
with name inside. 

BRUGERE, the name of several contemporary 
French makers, dating from Mirecourt and else- 
where. Some show good workmanship and varnish. 

CALOT, , about 1830. He was in the work- 
shop of Cle'ment prior to date given. See AUGIERE. 

CASTAGNERY, Andrea. See Italian list. 

CASTAGNERY, Jean Paul. M. Fetis mentions this 
maker as having worked in Paris, 1638-62. 

CHAMPION, Rene", Paris, about 1735. His in- 
struments are well made, and the varnish is of 
good quality. 

CHANOT, Francois, born at Mirecourt in 1788. 
An engineer by profession. Becoming interested 
in the construction of Violins, he designed one 
having sides like those of the guitar. M. Chouquet 
describes a Violin of this maker, made for Viotti, 
and remarks that the experiment of Frangois 
Chanot opened the way to those of Savart. The 
date of Chanot's patent is 1818. The paper of 
Savart on the construction of bow instruments 



FRENCH MAKERS 235 

was read at the French Academy in the follow- 
ing year. 

CHANOT, Georges, Paris. Brother of the above- 
named, born at Mirecourt, 1801. Throughout life 
was a most indefatigable worker. He has made 
a very large number of copies of Stradivari and 
Guarneri, chiefly of the former, which are also the 
best. They are well constructed instruments, and 
the wood is of an excellent description. He was 
long known as a dealer in Cremonese instruments, 
and many notable rarities passed into his posses- 
sion. The instruments of this maker will, at no 
distant date, be valued higher than they are at the 
present time. He died in 1883. 

CHANOT, Georges, London. Son of Georges 
Chanot, Paris, Assisted Charles Maucotel, and 
a short time afterwards started in "business on his 
own behalf. He died in 1893. 

CHANOT, F. Son of Georges Chanot. 

CHANOT, G. A. Brother of the above-named. 

CHAPPUY, Nicolas- Augustin, about 1765. His 
instruments are chiefly of large pattern ; nearly 
all are branded on the button, in a similar manner 
to those of the Testore family. Chappuy differed 
greatly in his work. When he used plenty of wood 
we have instruments of a good kind and worthy 
of attention. There are many, however, having 
his brand that are scarcely fit to be called Violins, so 
inferior is the work and wood. 

The Violin M. Habeneck used during thirty- 



236 THE VIOLIN 

seven years, when instructing- his class at the 
Conservatoire, Paris, was made by Chappuy, and 
is preserved at that institution. 

CHARDON, Joseph, Paris, son-in-law and pupil 
of Georges Chanot, Paris, to whose business he 
succeeded in the year 1872. 

CHAROTTE, , born at Mirecourt, settled at 

Rouen. Died in 1836. 

CHATERAIN, Paris, about 1759. Good work- 
manship. 

CHEVRIER, Andre"- Augustin, about 1838. Born 
at Mirecourt, worked in Paris and Brussels. 

CLAUDOT, Charles, Paris, possibly came from 
Mirecourt. The workmanship is heavy ; varnish 
mostly yellow. His instruments are good for 
orchestral purposes. His name is generally found 
stamped on the back, inside. 

CLAUDOT, Augustin, Paris, " Strad " pattern, 
yellow varnish, good wood. 

CLEMENT, , Paris, 1815-40. 

CLIQUOT, Henri, Paris, about 1765. 

CLIQUOT, Louis Alexandre, about 1765. 

COUSINEAU, Paris, about the end of the i8th 
century. Well made, name often branded on 
button. 

CUNAULT, Georges, Paris, contemporary ; worked 
with Miremont, and afterwards alone ; a careful 
maker. 

CUNY, , Paris. i8th century. 

CUYPERS, Johannes, 1755-18 . Worked at the 



FRENCH MAKERS 237 

Hague ; varnish often yellow in colour. Well 
finished instruments, which are rising in value. 

DANIEL, , 1656, is described as having made 

a Double- Bass for the orchestra of one of the 
chapels at Antwerp Cathedral. 

DARCHE, Nicholas, Aix la Chapelle, died 1873. 
Made many useful instruments on the lines of the 
Cremonese Masters. Other makers of this name 
worked in Brussels and Mirecourt in the iQth 
century. 

DAVID, . Maker to the court of Louis XVI. 

DE COMBLE, Ambroise, Tournay, about 1760. 
It is said that he worked in the shop of Antonio 

Stradivari, and judg- 

Fait a Tournay par . f i r >, arartpr 

Ambroise de Comble, 1750. 

of the work, together 

with that of the varnish, it is not unlikely that he 
did receive instructions from the great Cremonese 
maker. The varnish is very like Italian; the colour 
often a rich red, with much body. His instruments 
are inclined to roughness as regards workmanship, 
and therefore are not pleasing to the eye. There 
is a resemblance to the instruments of Stradivari 
after 1732 in form, though not in workmanship, 
and he would therefore seem to have copied those 
late instruments. They may be described as of 
large pattern, flat model, and having an abundance 
of wood. They are deserving of attention both 
from the professor and the amateur, the workman- 
ship being skilful and the material excellent. The 



238 THE VIOLIN 

tone is large, and frequently possesses the richness 
so much admired in the works of the Italians. 
-This quality is traceable to the soft and flexible 
nature of the superior varnish with which these 
instruments are covered. Several Violas and 
Violoncellos are extant which were made by 
De Comble. 

DEHOMMAIS, Paris, 1870. See GERMAIN (Emile). 

DELANOIX, , Bruxelles, about 1760. 

DELAUNAY, , Paris, 1775, Viol-maker. M. 

Chouquet describes an instrument of this maker 
which is in the collection at the Conservatoire. 

DELEPLANQUE, Gerard, Lille, 1768. 

DERAZEY, Honore", Mirecourt. Many of the 
instruments of this maker are carefully finished. 
They are heavy in wood. The varnish is inclined 
to hardness. Died 1875. 

DERAZEY, J. A., Mirecourt, 1815-85. Son of 
Honore" ; purchased the business of Nicolas. 
Made many useful instruments. 

DESPONS, Antoine, Paris, i7th century, is said to 
have made excellent instruments of various patterns. 

DIEULAFAIT, , 1720, Viol-maker. A Viol da 

Gamba of this maker is at the Conservatoire, Paris. 

DROULOT, , Paris, 1788. 

DUCHERON, Mathurin, Paris, 1714. 

Du MESNIL, Jacques, Paris, about 1655. 

EESBROECK, Jean Van, 1585, Antwerp, Lute- 
maker. M. C. Chevalier de Brabure states he 
was the son of Josse van Eesbroeck, of Maria 



FRENCH MAKERS 239 

Kerch. He gives some interesting particulars 
relative to the connection of music with the 
guild of St. Luke at Antwerp, and speaks 
of the makers of Clavichords seeking for ad- 
mission into the Guild in 1557, adding that 
it was natural these makers should desire to 
belong to a corporation so great and honourable 
as that of St. Luke, which since 1480 had its 
Chambers of Rhetoric " dite de Violiren, de 
Violier" 

FALAISE, . Copied the Amatis and Stradivari. 

The workmanship may be likened to that of Pique. 
Varnish yellow and thin. There is no indication 
of a resort to any maturing process. Wood 
frequently handsome. 

PENT, or FENDT, , Paris, 1780. A maker 

known among French connoisseurs ; related to the 
Fendts who worked in London. 

FLEURY, Benoist, Paris, from about 1755 to 
1788. A Viol da Gamba of this maker, from 
the Clapisson collection, is at the Conservatoire, 
Paris. 

FOURRIER, Nicolas, Mirecourt. See NICOLAS. 

GAILLARD, Charles, Paris, about 1850-81. Born 
at Mirecourt. Worked in Paris with C. A. Gand, 
and later on his own account. He was one of the 
best modern French makers, and his instruments 
already take high rank and command good prices. 

GAILLARD- LAJOUE, J. B., Mirecourt, brother of 
the above. Apprenticed to Gand, for whom he 



240 THE VIOLIN 

worked until about 1852. Much of his work is of 
a high order, and his best instruments are yearly 
increasing in value. He died about 1870. 

GAND, Charles Francois, Paris. He became a 
pupil of Nicolas Lupot in the year 1802. During 
his apprenticeship he proved himself an excellent 
maker, and was much valued by his famous 
instructor. He married the daughter of Lupot, 
and succeeded him in the Rue Croix des Petits 
Champs in the year 1824. The career of Fran9ois 
Gand was one of much activity. As a repairer 
of the works of the great masters he early obtained 
a high reputation, and perhaps restored more 
valuable instruments than any repairer of his time. 
The care that he took and the judgment which 
he exercised in endeavouring to bring together 
the various broken parts of an imperfect instru- 
ment, that the original appearance might be main- 
tained as closely, as possible, cannot be too highly 
praised. He often accomplished seeming impossi- 
bilities. Splintered cracks were by his ingenuity 
closed as though no fibre had been severed, while 
at other times pieces were inserted so deftly that 
the most experienced eyes might fail to detect their 
presence. It was with him a labour of love, and 
he did not scruple to spend days over work on 
which others would only spend hours. He made 
many Violins, several of which were given as 
prizes at the Paris Conservatoire. They are well- 
made instruments, though heavy in appearance. 



FRENCH MAKERS 241 

They are good serviceable instruments, and, the 
wood not having been browned by baking or other 
injurious process, age mellows them greatly. He 
died in the year 1845. 

GAND, Charles Adolphe, son of Charles Fra^ois 
Gand, was instructed by his father, and succeeded, 
together with his brother, to the old-established 
house founded by his grandfather. He died in 1866. 

GAND, Charles Nicholas Eugene, Paris, brother 
of C. Adolphe Gand, was a connoisseur of much 
experience and reputation. Upon the death of 
his brother C. Adolphe he entered into partner- 
ship with Bernardel Brothers. The firm employed 
many workmen, and turned out large numbers of 
useful, well-made instruments, with red varnish. 
They were the recipients of numerous medals 
and decorations. C. N. E. Gand died in 1892. 

GAVINIES, Francois, Paris, about 1734. Father 
of Pierre Gavinies, the Violinist. Old French 

school. The wood 

Gavinies, rue J s o f ten o f excellent 

S. Thomas du Louvre, ' 

a Paris, 17 quality, and the var- 

nish also. Many of 

these old French makers, like our good English 
ones, made instruments of tw r o qualities, and 
Gavinies was one of them. 

GERMAIN, Joseph Louis, born at Mirecourt in 
1.822. In Paris he was employed by Fran9ois 
Gand, and afterwards worked for Vuillaume, for 
whom he made several choice instruments. It 



242 THE VIOLIN 

is to be regretted that his exceptional abilities 
were not allowed to add lustre to his name, 
he having made for the trade. He died in 1870. 

GERMAIN, Emile, Paris. Son of the above ; 
established in Paris as a maker and restorer of 
Violins. He was, until 1882, in partnership with 
a maker named Dehommais. 

GOSSELIN, , Paris, 1814-40. 

GRAND-GERARD, Paris, about 1800. Common- 
place work branded occasionally with his name. 

GRANDSON, Fils, Mirecourt, about 1850. 

GROSSET, Paul Fran9ois, Paris, about 1750. Pupil 
of Claude Pierray. 

GUERSAN, Louis, succeeded Paul Pierray. 

Ludovicus Guersan prope Comaediam Gallicam, Lutetiae, 
Anno 1766. 

HEL, Pierre Joseph, Lille, contemporary. Well- 
made instruments. 

HENRY, Jean Baptiste. Born 1757, near Mire- 
court. Worked in Paris. 

HENRY, Jean Baptiste Felix, son of the above. 
Established in Paris 1817. 

HENRY, Charles, brother of the above, born 
1803. Made several excellent instruments. 

HENRY, Octave, nephew of Charles. 

HENRY, Eugene, son of Charles, born in 1843. 

HOFMANS, Mathias, Antwerp, 1700-25. A Kit 
of this maker was exhibited at Milan in 1870. 

JACOBS, Hendrik, Amsterdam, 1690-17 . A 



FRENCH MAKERS 243 

close imitator of Niccolo Amati. Few makers have 
been more mistaken than Jacobs ; so exact was he 
in following the model of Amati, that numbers of 
his Violins are passed by the inexperienced as 
original. He mostly selected the grand pattern of 
Amati for his model, which gave him full scope for 
the exercise of his powers. He selected wood as 
nearly as possible resembling that found in the 
works of Niccolo Amati. The backs are mostly of 
even grain, and compact ; the modelling can only 
be found fault with near the purrling, where its 
sharpness at once catches the attention of the critic 
in these matters, and divulges the true author. 
The varnish, though good, is not equal to that of 
Amati. The scroll is inferior to the body in merit. 
The purfling is of whalebone, like that of most of 
the Dutch makers. 

JACOBS, , Amsterdam, probably a son of the 

above. Excellent varnish, of a deep red, very 
transparent ; full of character, but wanting in finish. 
Purfling embedded. 

JACQUOT, Charles, born at Mirecourt in 1804. 
Worked in Paris. He obtained prizes for his 
instruments at the Paris and other exhibitions. 

JACQUOT, Pierre Charles, Nancy, son of the above. 

JEANDEL, P. N., born in 1812. Worked for some 
years in Paris, and received prizes at the Paris and 
other exhibitions. He died in 1879. 

KOLIKER, , Paris, 1789-1820. 

LAMBERT, Jean Nicolas, Paris, about 1745. 



244 THE VIOLIN 

LAPAIX, , Lille, about 1855. 

LAPREVOTTE, Etienne, Paris, 1825-56. 

LECLERC, , Paris, about 1775. 

LECOMTE, , Paris, 1788. 

LEDUC, Pierre, Paris, 1646. 

LEFEBVRE, , Amsterdam, about 1730. 

LEFEBVRE, , Paris, 1788. 

LE JEUNE, Frangois, Paris, 175 . 

LE PILEUR, Pierre, about 1754. 

LESCLOP, Frangois Henry, Paris, 1746. 

Louis, , Geneva. 

LOUVET, Jean, -Paris, 1750. 

LUPOT, Jean, Mirecourt. 

LUPOT, Laurent, Mirecourt, born 1696. Son of 
Jean Lupot, removed to Plombieres, afterwards to 
Luneville, and again to Orleans. 

LUPOT, Frangois, born 1736. Son of Laurent. 
Born at Plombieres. In the year 1758 he removed 
to Stuttgart, and was appointed maker to the Duke 
of Wurtemberg. Francois removed with his son 
Nicolas to Orleans in 1770. He died in Paris in 
1804. The workmanship and style are similar to 
those seen in the instruments of Chappuy and other 
makers of that period. Scroll rather rough, varnish 
dark brown, broad pattern. 

LUPOT, Nicolas, son of Frangois, born at Stutt- 
gart in 1758, re- 

J5i WJft Lutl ? r ' moved with his father 

rue d Illiers, a Orleans, 1 an 1791. 

to Orleans in 1770. 
He established himself in Paris in 1794, his fame 



FRENCH MAKERS 245 

having reached that city some time before. The 
attention which he. soon received from the musical 
world of Paris proved to him that his removal 

was advantageous. 

Nicolas Lupot, Luthier. rue de TT i j 

' He had nOt 



Grammont; a Paris, 1'an 1803. 

been in Paris before 

Nicolas Lupot. Luthier. rue Croix i i j 

des-petits-champs, a Paris, 1'an 1817. he WaS hon Ured 

with the patronage 

of the Conservatoire of Music, an honour which 
is attended with many benefits, the chief of 
which is the making of a Violin annually, to 
be awarded as a prize to the most successful 
student among the Violinists. By this arrange- 
ment the maker has an opportunity of exercising 
to the best advantage all the skill of which he 
is capable, as he is at once aware that the atten- 
tion of the public is directed to the constructor 
of the prize, as well as to the receiver, and that 
an immediate road to popularity is thus opened. 
Lupot's appointment as maker to the Conservatoire 
was enjoyed by his successor, Fra^ois Gand, and 
was retained by the latter's son, in conjunction 
with Bernardel. Nicolas Lupot may be justly 
termed the French Stradivari. He was an artist 
in every sense of the word. He regarded the 
works of Stradivari with the utmost veneration. 
While, however, he laboured unceasingly to imitate 
him, he scorned all those mischievous maturing 
processes common to so many French copy- 
ists ; he never desired that his copy should 



246 THE VIOLIN 

pass with the unwary as the original ; it left his 
hands wholly unsophisticated. There is not an 
instance in which he did not varnish the copy all 
over, leaving time to do its work of wear, although 
by so doing he doubtless sacrificed much in his 
own time, inasmuch as all new Violins, so varnished, 
have a crude appearance, notwithstanding any 
amount of high finish expended upon them. What, 
however, Lupot lost in his own day has been 
awarded to his name a hundredfold since. He 
seldom occupied himself in copying Guarneri or 
Amati, although there are a few beautiful examples 
met with now and again in which he adopted these 
forms. Stradivari was his idol, and from the fact 
already mentioned, that he is very rarely found to 
have followed any other model than that of Stradi- 
vari, he would seem to have been aware of his own 
peculiar fitness for the great master's design. 
Every feature of Lupot's instruments was clearly 
a matter of study with him. It cannot be said of 
him, as of most other makers, that certain points 
are good, while others are weak. Every portion of 
his work contributes to the harmonious whole. 
The outline is perfect ; the sound-hole is executed 
in a masterly manner ; the model, purfling, and 
scroll of equal merit. He was untouched in his 
own day, and his productions have never been 
approached since. The varnish of Lupot is peculiar 
to him. Its qualities are good, being free from 
hardness. Though it is not of the Italian type, 



FRENCH MAKERS 247 

neither is it of the kind usually met with on the 
Violins of his contemporaries : it may be described 
as a quality of varnish coming between the Italian 
and the French. Its colour varies between light 
and dark red. Age has assisted in heightening its 
lustre, and although it will never rank with the 
varnish of Cremona, yet it will hold its own among 
the varnishes of modern times. It is said that 
many instruments having the name of Pique in 
them are the work of Lupot, and this misnomer is 
accounted for by the story that Pique purchased 
them in an unvarnished state, and varnished them 
with his preparation. Be this as it may, it is 
certain that the varnish of Pique could not serve to 
benefit such instruments ; on the contrary, it would 
reduce their value. The tone of Lupot's instru- 
ments improves yearly. The quality is round and 
telling, and free from roughness. He died in Paris 
in 1824, aged 66, and was succeeded in his business 
by his son-in-law, Francois Gand. 

MARQUIS DE LAIR, Mirecourt, about 1800. The 
name is generally branded on the back. The wood 
is chiefly of a plain description, and varnish wanting 
in transparency. 

MAST, Jean Laurent, Paris, about 1750. 

MAST, Joseph Laurent, Mirecourt and Toulouse. 
Son of Jean Laurent. A Violin dated 1816 is 
in the Museum of the Paris Conservatoire. 

MAUCOTEL, Charles, born at Mirecourt, in 1807. 
In 1834 he entered the workshop of Gand in Paris. 



248 THE VIOLIN 

In 1844 he was employed by Davis, of Coventry 
Street, London, and ultimately commenced business 
in Rupert Street, from which he retired in 1860, 
and returned to France. He made several instru- 
ments, all of which have good qualities in workman- 
ship and tone. They are strong in wood and 
carefully modelled. 

MAUCOTEL, Charles Adolphe, Mirecourt, worked 
in Paris from 1839 until 1858, in which year he 
died. He made many excellent instruments. 

MEDARD, Francois, was established in Paris about 

Franciscus Medard l ?OO. The work is 

fecit Parisiis 1710. excellent, and the 

varnish soft and transparent. 

MEDARD, Nicolas, Nancy, brother of Frangois. 

MEDARD, Jean, Nancy, brother of Nicolas. 

MENNEGAND, Charles, born at Nancy in 1822. 
He is distinguished both as a maker and repairer of 
instruments. He entered the service of Rambaux 
in Paris in 1840. He has been rightly regarded as 
having displayed singular ability in the delicate and 
difficult task of " cutting" the large Italian Violon- 
cellos and Tenors. The practice of reducing the 
dimensions of Cremonese instruments has happily 
come to be looked upon as emulative of the acts of 
the Goths and Vandals. It is in any case certain 
that numerous instruments have been operated 
upon with no greater skill than might have been 
expected at the hands of those barbarians. "These 
ruthless men," remarks Charles Reade, "just sawed 



FRENCH MAKERS 249 

a crescent off the top, and another off the bottom, 
and the result is a thing with the inner bout of a 
giant and the upper and lower bout of a dwarf." 
He rightly names this, " cutting in the statutory 
sense, viz., cutting and maiming," and implores the 
owner of an instrument in its original state to spare 
it, and if too large, to play on one of the value of 
^5, with the Cremona set before him to look at 
while he plays. To " cut " a Cremona, and to cut 
a diamond into a brilliant or a rose, are tasks 
equally difficult. The indifferent operator, in both 
cases, suffers more or less from the injury and 
annoyance his unskilfulness has occasioned. Borgis, 
a Venetian diamond-cutter, was employed by Shah 
Jehan to cut the Koh-i-nor, and in place of a 
reward was fined ten thousand ducats for his im- 
perfect performance. Had it happened that some 
possessors of Cremonese gems had inflicted mone- 
tary or other punishment on incapable instrument 
cutters, the world would have been richer in 
Cremonas. Mennegand was at Amsterdam for 
a few years, and returned to Paris in 1857. He 
died in 1885. 

MIREMONT, Claude Augustin, Paris. Born at 
Mirecourt in 1827, removed to Paris in 1844. 
Miremont has made several excellent Violins, 
copies of Stradivari and Guarneri. He was for 
some years in New York, but returned to Paris 
and died at Pontorson in 1887. 

MODESSIER, , Paris, 1810. Made several 



250 THE VIOLIN 

instruments of large pattern, excellent for orchestral 
purposes. Wood of good quality. 

MOUGENOT, Georges, Brussels, contemporary. 

NAMY, -, Paris, 1780 to 1806. 

NEZOT, , about 1750, maker of Viols. 

NICOLAS, Fra^ois (Nicolas Fourrier), went from 
Mirecourt to Paris, where he is said to have worked 
from about 1784 to 1816. 

NICOLAS, Didier, Mirecourt, 1757-1833. The 
instruments of this maker are chiefly of large size, 
the outline being after that of Stradivari. They 
are mostly stamped on the back, inside, " A la ville 
de Cremonne, D. Nicolas Aine." Colour, yellow ; 
tone very powerful, and admirably adapted for the 
orchestra. 

NICOLAS, Joseph, son of Didier, born 1796, died 
1864. 

OUVRARD, Jean, pupil of Claude Pierray. 

PACHERELE, Michel, Paris, about 1779. 

PACHEREL, Pierre, Nice, died 1871, probably re- 
lated to Michel Pacherele. Good workmanship ; 
made several copies of Stradivari. 

PAUL, Saint, Paris, i7th century. Chiefly copied 
Amati. In the style of Boquay. 

PIERRAY, Claude, Paris, from about 1700 to 1725. 
Was an excellent workman, and many of his pro- 
ductions partake of 

Claude Pierray, proche la Comedie fa j j. character 
a Pans, 1725. 

to a considerable ex- 
tent. They are of two patterns, the majority being 




Plate 14. 



[To face p. 250. 



FRENCH MAKERS 251 

large. Amati would seem to have been his model, 
but his instruments can scarcely be considered 
copies of that maker, the outline only being re- 
tained, while the other features are dissimilar. The 
wood is rarely handsome, but its quality is good ; 
the thicknesses are variable. The work is of. 
average merit. Varnish is of a pale red colour, 
of good quality. It is interesting to learn that 
these instruments were appreciated in England at 
the beginning of the eighteenth century. Tom 
Britton had in his collection of books and instru- 
ments at Clerkenwell a " Claude Pierray," which is 
described in the sale catalogue as " a very beautiful 
Violin, and as good as a Cremona." 

PIETE, N., Paris, about 1780. 

jj PILLEMENT, F., Paris, 1790-1820. Work branded 
inside. 

PIQUE, F. L., Paris, about 1788-1822. As a copy- 
ist of Stradivari, this maker approached, perhaps, 

nearest to Nicolas 

Pique, rue de Grenelle St. Honore, LllDOt It has been 
au coin de celle des 2 Ecus, a 

Paris, 1790. supposed that some 

Violins bearing the 

name of Pique were made by Lupot, and varnished 
by Pique. There are several specimens of Pique's 
instruments upon which have been lavished care 
and skill of a very high order. Each feature is 
brought out, while, at the same time, exaggeration, 
that common error of the copyist, is avoided. The 
scrolls are well executed, both in point of finish and 



252 THE VIOLIN 

style ; the sound-hole also is cut with precision. 
Many of his instruments have whole backs, of well- 
chosen material ; the bellies are of a fine quality of 
wood. The instruments of Pique have long been 
esteemed, and will grow in reputation. 

PIROT, Claude, Paris, about 1800. Pressenda 
style and appearance. 

PONS, Cesar, Grenoble, about 1775. 

PONS, , Paris, chiefly known as a maker of 

Guitars. 

RAMBAUX, Claude Victor, born 1809. Worked in 
early life at Mirecourt, and afterwards in Paris. 
He was a clever repairer, and gifted with excellent 
judgment in his treatment of the works of the old 
masters. He was at one time in the workshop of 
Gand. He died in 1871. 

RANGE, Thomas, Brussels, about 1683. Good 
workmanship, well purfled, flat model. 

RAUT,' Jean, worked at Rennes about 1760. 

REMY, , Paris, about 1760. 

REMY, Jean Mathurin, Paris, 1770-1854. 

REMY, Jules, Paris, 1813-76. 

REMY, , London, 1 840. Originally from Paris. 

Copied the old masters with average ability, but 
unfortunately adopted the pernicious practice of 
preparing the wood, making his instruments pre- 
maturely old without the qualities of healthy age. 

RENAUDIN, Leopold, Paris, about 1788. 

RENAULT, Nicolas, an early maker, contemporary 
with Tywersus. 



FRENCH MAKERS 253 

ROMBOUTS, Peeter, Amsterdam, about the middle 
of the 1 8th century. High model, varnish of much 
brilliancy, but flaky. 

ROZE, , Orleans, about 1760. Average 

workmanship, yellow varnish, heavy scroll. 

SACQUIN, , Paris, 1830-60, made several ex- 
cellent instruments ; oil varnish of good quality, neat 
work, " Strad" pattern, name branded on back, inside. 

SALLE, , Paris, about 1825-50. Made several 

copies of Guarneri, many of which are excellent. 
He was also a clever restorer of old instruments, 
and had a critical eye for the works of the old 
Italian masters, in which he dealt to some extent. 

SALOMON, Jean Baptiste Deshayes, Paris, about 

1750. 

SAUNTER, , about 1740-70. 

SCHNCECK, Egidius, Brussels, 1700-30. 

SILVESTRE, Pierre, Lyons. A maker of rare 
abilities. The finish of his instruments is of the 
highest order ; indeed, it would be difficult to find 
any maker within the range of the modern French 
school who has surpassed him in delicate work- 
manship. It may be said of him, as of many 
others, that extreme fineness of work is obtained 
often at the expense of character ; to develop 
both qualities needs the mind of a Stradivari. 
Silvestre was fortunate in procuring wood of 
beautiful quality ; there is scarcely an. instrument 
of his which is not handsome. He chiefly copied 
Stradivari. It is to be regretted that so few of his 
works are to be met with. Pierre Silvestre was 



254 THE VIOLIN 

born at Sommerwiller in 1801, and died at Lyons 
in 1859. In Paris he worked in the workshop of 
Lupot, and in that of his successor, Fra^ois Gand. 

SILVESTRE, Hippolyte, born 1808, brother of 
Pierre, with whom he worked in partnership at 
Lyons from 1831-48. Hippolyte worked in the 
shop of Vuillaume. He retired from business in 1 865. 

SILVESTRE, Hippolyte Chretien, Lyons, succeeded 
to the business of his uncles, Pierre and Hippolyte, 
which he transferred in 1884 to Paris. 

SIMON, Claude, Paris, about 1788. 

SIMONIN, Charles, Paris and Toulouse, pupil 
of J. B. Vuillaume. 

SOCQUET, Louis, Paris, about 1760-1800. 

THERESS, Charles, London. 

THIBOUT, Jacques Pierre, Paris, born 1777, died 
1856. A well-known dealer in rare Italian instru- 
ments. To him belongs the merit of having 
encouraged Luigi Tarisio to bring to Paris his 
Cremonese gems. When Tarisio paid his first 
visit to Paris, the reception that he met with was 
not of such a nature as to warrant his returning ; 
but having ultimately decided upon once more 
visiting the French capital, he met with Thibout, 
who, by earnest solicitation, prevailed on him to 
remove his rich wares to Paris. Jacques Pierre 
Thibout was an excellent workman, and his instru- 
ments are highly esteemed. 

THOMASSIN, , Paris, about 1845. 

TYWERSUS, , Nancy, i6th century. 

VAILLANT, Frangois, Paris, about 1750. 



FRENCH MAKERS 255 

VERON, Pierre Andre, 1720-50. 

VIBRECHT, Gysbert, Amsterdam, about 1700. 

VUILLAUME, Jean, Mirecourt, 1700-40. 

VUILLAUME, Claude, Paris, 1772-1834. The 
earliest maker of this family ; made commonplace 
instruments branded with his name. 

VUILLAUME, J. B., Paris, born 1798, died in 1875. 
There are upwards of 2,500 Violins which bear 
his name. Many of these he made throughout. 
The early ones are much appreciated, and having 
been wisely varnished over at first, now begin to 
show the good results of such handling. The 
career of Vuillaume was singularly eventful. Com- 
mencing life from the first stage of the ladder, he 
gradually mounted to the highest, by the help of 
the usual nurses of fortune, skill and perseverance. 
He was a great lover of Cremonese instruments, 
and was intimately associated with Tarisio. At 
the death of the celebrated Italian connoisseur, he 
purchased the whole of his collection. He em- 
ployed a number of skilful workmen, some of 
whom have achieved independent and individual 
reputations, and will be found noticed in their 
proper places in this work. 

VUILLAUME, N. F., Brussels. Brother of the 
above. Was well known both as a maker and 
connoisseur. Born in 1802 ; died 1876. 
VUILLAUME, Claude Fra^ois, born 1807. 
VUILLAUME, Sebastien, Paris, nephew of J. B. 
Vuillaume, made a few excellent instruments. 
He died in the same year, 1875. 



SECTION IX 
The German School 

" I A HERE is no trace of any German Violins 
-L of the time of Gasparo da Salo, or 
Maggini. This is certainly remarkable, 'and the 
more so when we consider how near were the 
German makers of Lutes, &c., to the old Italian 
town where Violins were being made. It is 
evident from this non-production of Violins that 
the Tyrolese were content with their Viols and 
Lutes, and did not recognise the wonderful effects 
of the little Violin until it had become pretty nearly 
perfected by the Italians. The manufacture of 
Lutes, Viols, and Guitars in Germany had in 1650, 
or a little later, reached its zenith, and the exquisite 
pieces of workmanship, in the shape of Lutes, 
Viols da Gamba, and Viols d'Amore, richly inlaid 
with mother-of-pearl, ivory, and tortoiseshell, made 
at this period, evidence the high state of the art. 

To Jacob Stainer is due the credit, to a great 
extent, of changing the system of modelling so 

long in vogue in Germany. Although so great 

256 



THE GERMAN SCHOOL 257 

a maker, he was seemingly unable to free himself 
entirely from the proclivities common to his 
countrymen as Violin makers. There remained, 
after all Stainer's changes, the German sound- 
hole and extra arching, &c. Yet it must be 
readily admitted that the example which Stainer 
put before his countrymen was of great value, 
and served to engender an improved style through- 
out the Violin manufacture of Germany. The 
exceptional merits of this famous German artist 
were soon recognised, and his followers were 
legion. Among them were Sebastian Kloz, 
George Kloz, Egidius Kloz, and other members 
of that, perhaps the largest, family of Fiddle- 
makers the world has seen (had they been as 
good as they were numerous, what stores of prized 
Violins would have been bequeathed to us !) ; ' 
Reiss, of Bamberg ; Rauch, of Breslau ; and 
Leopold Widhalm, of Nuremberg, who was one 
of Stainer's best imitators ; and others less known. 
There were several German makers led, possibly, 
by the example of Stainer and Albani the younger 
who turned their attention to Italy, as furnishing 
models superior to their own, and thus combined 
the styles of both countries ; while they endeavoured 
to copy closely the Italian masters, without attempt- 
ing to be original. Niccol6 Amati was the maker 
whom these men chiefly copied, and most suc- 
cessfully did they perform their task. These 
copies, however, did not meet the success to 

s 



258 THE VIOLIN 

which they were entitled, and the popularity of 
Stainer's mode was then so great that the instru- 
ments made upon systems other than his found no 
favour in the Fatherland. The makers who were 
copyists of the Italian masters were Ruppert, 
Bachmann, Jauch, and Eberle of Prague. 

When we consider the long list of makers 
forming the^ German School, we cannot fail to 
feel surprised that the number of really good 
artists was not much larger ; and our surprise 
increases when the close proximity of the Tyrolese 
workers to the chief Italian centres of the manu- 
facture of Violins is also considered. If the names 
of Jacob Stainer and Mathias Albani be excepted, 
the list is singularly destitute of makers famous for 
originality. The Germans were certainly great in 
the manufacture of the older stringed instruments, 
but seem to have made a poor beginning in the 
making of Violins. The form selected was bad, 
and they failed to improve upon it to any great 
extent. It would be quite impossible to furnish 
anything approaching a complete list of German 
makers, their number being so extended, and so 
many of their instruments being anonymous, and 
withal so weak in character that it is hard to 
discern them. Every care, however, has been 
taken to render the following list as complete as 
possible, 



SECTION X 
German Makers 

A LEAN I, Mathias, Botzen. M. Fetis, quoting 
the Biographical Dictionary of Moritz Berman, 
with regard to Albani, States that he was born in 
1621, and died in 1673. The form is somewhat like 
Stainer's, but higher and heavier in construction. 
The varnish is very rich. Wood of good quality. 
ALBANI, Mathias, Botzen, about 1650-1712. 
Son of the above. This maker should, perhaps, 

have been classed 

Mathias Albani Fecit i .1 r T . i 

Bulsani Tyrol 1651. Wlth th Se f Ital 7' 

his style being 

Italian ; but as he was the son of the well-known 

German maker, it 

Matthias Albanus Fecit .-i i , 

Bulsani in Tyrol! 1680. WaS Bought best 

that his name should 

follow that of his father under the head of German 
makers. The son has shown but faint marks of 
having been tutored by his parent in the art of 
Violin-making. He is said to have visited Cremona, 

in order to receive instruction there under Amati, 

259 



260 THE VIOLIN 

and this circumstance may have given to his work 
that Italian air which is so pleasing to the con- 
noisseur. 1 This maker is often credited with the 
work of the elder Albani, it having been supposed 
that there was but one of that name. The model 
is good, and the workmanship throughout demands 
high praise. Gerber states that the famous 
Violinist, Tomaso Albinoni, possessed two Violins 
of this maker, dated 1702 and 1709. 

ALBANI, Paolo, Palermo, about 1633. Probably 
related to the Albanis of Botzen. See Italian makers. 

ALETZIE, Paolo, Munich. See Italian makers. 

Paulus Aletzee hof 

Lauten und Geigen- 

macher in Munchen 1710. 

ARTMANN, , Weimar, near Gotha, i8th 

century. Was originally a joiner. Copied Amati 
very cleverly. The varnish is frequently of amber 
colour. 

BACHMANN, Carl Ludwig, born at Berlin, 1716. 
Court musician and Violin-maker. The work is 
clean, and not without style. Bachmann was a 
performer on the Viol. In 1765 he was appointed 
instrument maker to the court of Frederick the 
Great. Bachmann, in conjunction with Ernest 
Benda, founded in 1770 the concerts for amateurs 
at Berlin. He died in 1800. 

BACHMANN, O., Halberstadt, Violin-maker, and 

1 He appears to have worked for a time in Rome, from 
which city some instruments are dated. 



GERMAN MAKERS 261 

author of a handbook on the construction of bow 
instruments, published in 1835 at Leipsic. 

BAUSCH, Ludwig C. A., Leipsic, born at Nurem- 
berg in 1815. Pupil of B. Fritsche in Dresden. 

BAUSCH, Ludwig B. Son of the above. 

BAUSCH, Otto B., Leipsic, born 1841, brother of 
the above. 

BECKMANN, Sweno, Stockholm, about 1700. The 
work is rough. 

BEDLER, , about 1750. 

BELA, Szepessy, born at Budapest in 1856. Now 
living in London. 

BINDERNAGEL, , Gotha, 1 8th century. Copied 

Amati chiefly. There are a few of his instru- 
ments which are on the model of Stradivari, and 
are highly valued in Germany. 

BUCHSTADTER, Gabriel David, Ratisbon, i8th 
century. His Violins are not equal in merit. 
Some have excellent wood, others very indifferent. 
When one of his best instruments can be pro- 
cured, it is a good substitute for a second-class 
Italian. 

CHRISTA, Joseph Paul, Munich, 1730. 

Josephus Paulus Christa, Lauten 
und Geigenmacher in Miinchen. 17 

DIEL, Martin (spelt Diehl by later members of 
the family), Mayence, worked with Nicolaus Dopfer, 
and later with Carl Helmer of Prague. He was 
a son-in-law of Dopfer. 



262 THE VIOLIN 

DIEL, Nicolaus, born 1779, son of Martin, worked 
with his uncle Jacob Steininger of Frankfort. He 
succeeded to the business of his father. Died 1851. 

DIEL, Johann, brother of Nicolaus. 

DIEL, Jacob, son of Nicolaus, settled in Bremen 
1834, later in Hamburg. Died 1873. 

DIEHL, Nicolaus Louis, Hamburg, son of Jacob 
Diehl, died 1876. 

DIEHL, Friedrich, Darmstadt, born 1814, son of 
Nicolaus, received a bronze medal, Paris Exhi- 
bition, 1867. 

DIEHL, Johann, Mayence. 

DIEHL, Heinrich, son of Johann. 

DOPFER, Nicolaus, 1768. The instruments of 
this maker are well made ; the model is less raised 
than that of many German makers. He made a 
few large Tenors. Dopfer was the master of 
Martin Diehl. 

DURFEL, J. G., Altenburg, i8th century. A 
well-known maker of Double- Basses. 

EBERLE, J. Ulric, Prague, about 1730-50. 
Was a good copyist of the Italian masters. 
Eberle also made Viols d' Amour. 

Joannes Udalricus Eberle, 
Lautenmacher in Prag, 1730. 

EDLINGER, T., Prague, about 1712. 

EDLINGER, Joseph Joachim, Prague. Son of the 
above. Worked for some time in Italy. Died 
1748. 



GERMAN MAKERS 263 

ELSLER, Johann Joseph, Mayence, 1720-50. 
Made many good Viols da Gamba. 

ERNST, Franz Anton, born in 1745 in Bohemia, 
died in 1805. He was an eminent Violinist, and 
received lessons from Antonio Lolli. In 1778 he 
was engaged as Court musician at Gotha. He took 
great interest in Violin-making, and made several 
excellent instruments. 

FELDEN, M., Vienna, about 1550. Maker of 
Viols. 

FICHTOLD, Hans, about 1612. Lute-maker. 

FICHTL, Martin, Vienna, 1757. Large pattern, 
good varnish, wood of excellent quality. 

FICKER, Johann Christian, Cremona, 1720. Said 
to have lived in the midst of the greatest makers 
the world has had ; if so, he certainly did not make 
himself acquainted with the art of Violin-making 
as understood in Cremona. His instruments may 
have been made at Mittenwald, and dated from 
Cremona. 

FICKER, Johann Gotlieb, Cremona, 1789. 

FISCHER, Zacharie, Wiirtzburg, 1730. This 
maker adopted the practice of baking the wood for 
the manufacture of Violins. 

FISCHER, Anton, Vienna, died 1879. 

FREY, Hans, Nuremberg and Bologna, born 
about 1440. A celebrated maker of Lutes. He 
was the father-in-law of Albert Dlirer. John 
Evelyn, in his Diary, 1645, after speaking in praise 
of the cheese and sausages of Bologna, refers to 



264 THE VIOLIN 

the great celebrity of the Lutes by the old makers 
of that city, and mentions Hans Frey. He says 
they "were of extraordinary price, and the work- 
men were chiefly Germans." 

FRITZCHE, , Leipsic, about 1780-1810. 

GEDLER, Johann A., Fussen, about 1750. 

GEDLER, Johann B., Fussen, about 1780. 

GEISSENHOF, Franz, Vienna, died 1821. The 
initials F. G. sometimes branded on the button. 
Stradivari model. Good work. 

GERLE, Johann, Nuremberg, 1533 to about 1550. 
Maker of Lutes and Viols. He also published a 
book on the Lute, 1533. 

GRIESSER, Matthias, Innspruck, 1727. 

GRIMM, Carl, Berlin, born about 1794. He died 
at Berlin, 1855, and was succeeded by a son, 
Ludwig Grimm. 

GROBITZ, A., Warsaw, about 1750. 

GUGEMMOS, Fussen, Bavaria, 17 . Indifferent 
work. 

HAENSEL, Johann A., Berlin. Contributed an 
article to the "Leipsic Musical Gazette" in 1811, 
entitled " Ueber den Bau der Violin." 

HAMBERGER, Joseph, Presburg, 1845. 

HAMM, Johann Gottfried, Rome, i8th century. 
Made instruments of a wide pattern, often 
with ivory edges, and branded inside with his 
initials. 

HAMMIG, W. H., Leipsic. Now living. 

H ASSERT, , Eisenach, i8th century. 



GERMAN MAKERS 265 

H ASSERT, , Rudolstadt, i8th century. 

H ELMER, Carl, Prague, born 1740. Pupil of 
Eberle of Prague. 

HILDEBRANDT, Michael C., Hamburg, 1770. 

HILTZ, Paul, Nuremberg, 1656. Maker of Viols. 

HOFFMANN, Martin, Leipsic, about 1680101725. 
Maker of Lutes and Viols. 

HOFFMANN, Johann Christian, Leipsic, about 
1720. Son of Martin Hoffmann. Lute and Viol 
maker. 

HORNSTAINER, Joseph, Mittenwald, about 1730. 
Made a few Double- Basses of good quality. 

HORNSTAINER, Matthias, Mittenwald, about 1800. 

HORIL, Jacob, Rome, about 1742. 

HULLER, August, Shceneck, about 1775. 

HUMEL, Christian, Nuremberg, about 1709. 

HUNGER, Christoph Friedrich, Leipsic, born at 
Dresden, 1718, died 1787. One of the best 
German makers. 

JAIS, Johann, Botzen, about 1776. There were 
other makers of this name. 

JAUCH, Johann, Gratz, Styria, Austria. Worked 
in Dresden about 1774. 

KARB, , Konigsberg, Maker of Viols. 

KAMBL, Johann A., Munich, 1640. 

Johan Andreas Kambl Churfiirstl. 

Hof Lauten und Geigenmacher 

in Miinchen. 

KEMBTER, , Dibingen, about 1730. Stainer 

model. Good wood, and work well purfled. 



266 THE VIOLIN 

KIAPOSSE, Sawes, St. Petersburg, 1750. 

KIRCHSCHLAG, , Tyrol, 1780. 

KLOZ, Matthias, Mittenwald, 1656-1743. Is 
reported to have been a pupil of Stainer. The 
work is good and the varnish in some cases of a 
mellow quality, in others somewhat thin. Some 
of the wood that he used was cut at the wrong 
season, and is consequently worm-eaten. 

KLOZ, Sebastian, Mittenwald, 1696-1750, son 

of Matthias Kloz. 

Sebastian Kloz. in --pi r 

A ,.,, , , I he instruments of 

Mittenwald, An 17 

this maker are much 

esteemed. The model is flat as compared with 
most Violins of the German school. The varnish 
varies. 

KLOZ, George, Tyrol, 1687-1737, brother of 
Sebastian Kloz. Instruments well made, chiefly 
yellow in colour ; wood often worm-eaten. 

KLOZ, Egidius, Mittenwald, 1675-1711. 

KLOZ, Egidius, Mittenwald, 1733-1805. Son 
of Sebastian. One of the best of this very large 
family of makers. 

KLOZ, Joseph, Mittenwald, son of Egidius. 

KLOZ, J. Karl, about 1741. Good work, dark 
varnish, ornamental border round label. 

KNITTLE, Joseph, Mittenwald. 

KNITTING, Philip, Mittenwald, 1760. 

KOHL, Johann, Munich, 1580. Lute-maker to 
the Bavarian Court. 

KOLDITZ, J., Rumburg, died 1796. 




CHAPEL OF THE ROSARY. 
CHURCH OF ST. DOMEMCO, CREMONA. 



Plate 15. 



[To face p. 266. 



GERMAN MAKERS 267 

KOLDITZ, Mathias Johann, Munich, 1720. 

Mathias Joannes Koldjz, 

Lauten und Geigenmacher in 

Miinchen 17 

KRAMER, H., 1717, Viol-maker. 

KRINER, Joseph, Mittenwald, 1786. 

LASKA, Joseph, Prague, born at Rumburg, 1738, 
died 1805. Worked with J. Kolditz. 

LEMBOCK, Gabriel, Budapest, iQth century. 
Maker ; also known as a repairer of old instruments. 

MANN, Hans, Naples. 

MAUSSIELL, Leonard, Nuremberg, 1745. Stainer 
pattern, excellent workmanship. Thin yellow 
varnish, raised edges. The style and work is 
not unlike that of Tecchler. 

MAKER (MAIER), Andreas Ferdinand. 

Andreas Ferdinandus Mahr, 

Hof Laut und Geigenmacher 

in Salzburg. Anno 17 

Good varnish, sometimes with lion scrolls. 

MEUSIDLER, Johann, Nuremberg, about 1550. 
Maker of Viols. 

MOHR, Philip, Hamburg, i7th century. Viol- 
maker. 

MOLDONNER, Fussen, Bavaria, i8th century. 

NIGGEL, Simpertus, Fussen, 17 . Flat model, 
good workmanship. Branded inside with initials 
S. N. 

OHBERG, Johann, Stockholm, 1773. Workman- 
ship of average merit. Varnish mostly of yellow 
colour. 



268 THE VIOLIN 

OTT, Johann, Nuremberg, about 1463. Lute- 
maker. 

OTTO, Jacob August, born at Gotha, 1762, died 
1830. Violin-maker to the Court of Weimar. 
Received instructions from Franz Anton Ernest. 
He published a work in 1817 entitled, " Ueber den 
Bau und die Erhaltung der Geige und aller 
Bogeninstrumente," and another work with more 
information in 1828, the first English edition of 
which was published in 1848. 

OTTO, Georg August, son of Jacob August, born 
1807, died 1859. Succeeded to the business of his 
father at Jena. 

OTTO, Christian, Halle, second son of Jacob 
August. Born 1813, died 1876. 

OTTO, Heinrich, Berlin, third son of Jacob 
August. Born 1815, died 1858. 

OTTO, Carl, Ludwigslust, fourth son of Jacob 
August. Born 1825. Violin-maker to the Court 
of Mecklenburg. Died in 1883. 

OTTO, C. U. F., Stockholm, fifth son of Jacob 
August. Died 1884. 

OTTO, Ludwig, St. Petersburg, son of Georg 
August. Born at Cologne; died 1887. 

OTTO, Louis, Dusseldorf, son of Carl, now living. 

OTTO, Hermann, St. Petersburg, son of Ludwig. 
Died 1884. 

PARTH, Andreas Nicholas, Vienna, i8th century. 

PFRETZSCHNER, Johann Gottlob, Cremona, 1750. 
Very commonplace. 



GERMAN MAKERS 269 

PFRETZSCHNER, Carl Friedrich, Cremona, son of 
the preceding ; no merit. 

PLACK, F., Schoenbock, 1730-45. 

POSSEN, L., Schoengau, Bavaria, about 1553. 
Maker of Viols and Lutes. 

RAUCH, , Wurtzburg. 

RAUCH, Jacob, Manheim, 1720-50. Brother of 
the above. Court Violin-maker. 

RAUCH, Sebastian, Hamburg, 1725. High 
model, rough workmanship. A maker of this 
name is said to have worked at Leitmeritz, 
Bohemia, about 1750. Possibly the same. 

RAUCH, , Breslau, about 1750. 

REICHEL, Johann Gottfried, Absam, i8th century. 

REICHEL, Johann Conrad, Neukirchen, i8th 
century. 

REICHERS, August, Berlin, igth century. Pupil 
of Bausch of Leipsic. 

RIESS, , Bamberg, about 1750. 

ROSCHER, C. H. W., Bremen, about 1871. 

ROTH, Christian, Augsburg, i7th century. 

RUPPERT, Franz, Erfurt, i8th century. 

RUPPERT, J. N., Erfurt, 1719-28. 

SAINPRAE, Jacques, Berlin, i7th century. A 
Baryton Viol of this maker is among the musical 
instruments at the Kensington Museum. It is 
said to have belonged to Johann Quantz, the 
famous flute-player. 1 The Baryton was a favourite 

1 The flute-playing of Johann Joachim Quantz in 1728 
gave so much pleasure to the Crown Prince of Prussia, after- 



270 THE VIOLIN 

instrument with Haydn. He composed several 
pieces for the instrument, and was fond of 
playing it. The Baryton, or Viol di Bordone, 
is of the character of the Viole d' Amour, being 
strung with sympathetic metal strings. It is, how- 
ever, a large and more complicated instrument. 

SAWICKI, C. N., Vienna, 1792-1850. 

SCHEINLEIN, Mathias F., 1710-71. High 
built ; dark varnish. 

SCHEINLEIN, Johann Michael, Langenfeld, son 
of the above. Similar characteristics. 

SCHELL, Sebastian, Nuremberg, 1727. Lute- 
maker. 

SCHLICK, , Leipsic. 

SCHMIDT, , Cassel, 1800-25. Copied 

Stradivari indifferently ; wood of an inferior kind. 

SCHONFELDER, Johann A., Neukirchen, about 

1743- 

SCHONGER, Franz, Erfurt, i8th century. 

SCHONGER, Georg, Erfurt, son of the above. 
SCHORN, Johann, Innspruck, about 1680. An 
excellent maker ; the varnish is similar to that 

wards Frederick the Great, that he decided to take lessons 
from Quantz, who was then in the service of Augustus, 
Elector of Saxony and King of Poland. Quantz was 
stationed alternately in Dresden and Warsaw. He became 
a member of the orchestra of Augustus in 1718, when Jean 
Baptiste Volumier was its director, of whom mention has 
been made (page 208) relative to his having been sent to 
Cremona in 1715 to await the completion of twelve Violins 
ordered of Stradivari, 



GERMAN MAKERS 271 

of Albani ; high modelled. He appears to 
have removed to Salzburg. There are Viols 
of his make dated from there in 1696 and 1699. 

SCHORN, Johann Paul, Salzburg, about 1700-16. 
Court instrument-maker. 

SCHOTT, Martin, Prague. Chiefly known as a 
maker of Lutes. 

' SCHWARTZ, Strasbourg, about 1845. Several of 
this name worked in Strasbourg. 

SCHWEITZER, J. B., Budapest, died 1875. Flat 
model, neat workmanship. Made a few Tenors. 

STADELMANN, Daniel, Vienna, 1680-1744. Good 
work, model of Jacob Stainer. Thin varnish, 
sometimes yellow colour. 

STADELMANN, Johann Joseph, Vienna, i8th 
century. Copied Stainer ; average merit. 

STAINER. Jacob, Absam, born July 14, 1621, 
at Hall. The celebrity of this maker is second 
only to that of the great Cremonese artists. His 
admirers in Germany and England were, at one 
time, more numerous than those of the principal 

Italian makers. In 

Jacobus Stainer in Absam A 

propeOenipontum. 16- a manuscript note 

which Sir John 

Hawkins added to his own copy of his History 
of Music (1776), he says, "The Violins of 
Cremona are exceeded only by those of Stainer, 
a German, whose instruments are remarkable for 
a full and piercing tone." To the connoisseur 
of to-day such commendation may seem inexpli- 



272 THE VIOLIN 

cable, and cause him to believe that Fiddle 
admirers of past times were incapable of 
appreciating true beauty of form, and its bearing 
upon sound, or else that fashion made its influence 
felt on the Fiddle world as elsewhere. It would 
be absurd to deny that the greatest German 
maker of Violins that ever lived was a man of 
rare abilities, because it is indelibly written on 
his chief works that he was a thorough artist. 
Therefore an expression of surprise that Jacob 
Stainer has been estimated higher than even 
Stradivari by the Germans and English, must 
not be understood as a reflection on his abilities, 
since it refers to the form that he chose to give 
to his works. To account for the apparent in- 
consistency in the works of Stainer, and to 
strike the balance between his exceptional abilities 
on the one side and his model on the other, is 
not easy. His form was not a borrowed one ; 
it is as original as that of Stradivari a fact 
which makes it more than ever unintelligible 
that he should have been content with it. To 
arrive at anything approaching to a satisfactory 
solution, we must endeavour to trace the history 
of this model. Jacob Stainer was born in the 
Tyrol, and passed there his early years, and 
probably received his first instructions from one 
of the old Tyrolean Lute and Viol makers, at a 
period when they raised their model, and intro- 
duced into the German School the scooping round 



GERMAN MAKERS 273 

the sides of the backs and bellies, the inelegant 
sound-hole, the harsh outline, and uncouth scroll. 
As experience ripened his understanding, he 
may have felt that these characteristics of the 
German School were not such as could be 
moulded with advantage by an artist, whatever 
his talent might be, and resolved to do his best 
to unlearn much that he had acquired. In order 
to do so with any chance of success, but one 
course was open to him that of studying the 
works of the Italian masters. It has been stated 
that he went to Italy when very young. With 
this view I do not concur. In all cases where 
there is an absence of direct evidence, opinions 
can only be formed from particular analogies 
bearing on the case under consideration. Now 
in the case of Stainer we have nothing to guide 
us but his variations of style, and dates of time 
and place. What is the result of a careful 
investigation of every particle of evidence that 
we can glean ? The style is ever German, 
although the great maker is head and shoulders 
above all his countrymen who followed his art. 
I am thus forced to believe that had so excellent 
an artist visited Italy in his youth, as reported, 
there would have remained but the faintest trace 
of its origin. That men of less ability should 
be unable to entirely sever themselves from 
their national style of work, even under circum- 
stances most favourable for such a release, I 

T 



274 THE VIOLIN 

can readily understand ; it is an incapacity which 
has been exemplified over and over again ; but 
Jacob Stainer was not one of these ordinary 
men ; he had not his superior in the school of 
Cremona as a finished workman, with the single 
exception of Antonio Stradivari. I believe, 
therefore, that the German style was deeply 
rooted within him when he ceased to be young, 
and that if he went to Cremona or Venice, it 
was not until he recognised the inferiority of the 
school in which he had been bred, as compared 
with that of Cremona or Venice. That he did 
not go far enough in his " second thought " is 
pretty well acknowledged on all sides. His 
originality was conceived in the German School, 
amid the worst examples, and it was too late 
to undo what had gone before. Here, then, 
lies; I consider, the key to the seeming anomaly 
that so great a maker as Stainer should have 
adopted and clung to so clumsy a model. That 
he became acquainted with much of the best 
work of the Italians is evidenced by his im- 
proved style. The varnish he used furnishes 
even stronger evidence of his having possessed 
a knowledge of the subject equal to that of the 
Cremonese makers. Whether he acquired this 
knowledge in Cremona or Venice cannot be 
stated with certainty, but I am inclined to believe 
that he gained it in the first-named city. Who 
but an artist acquainted with the best work of 



GERMAN MAKERS 275 

Italy in Violin-making could have made those 
exquisite Violins known as " Elector Stainers " ? 
The wood, selected for its rare loveliness, the 
finished workmanship, and charming rose-coloured 
varnish, render these works of art of which 
one glimpse is a never-fading memory. These 
works show the diligent zeal with which Stainer 
laboured in his studies of the Italian masters. 
He contrived to give these instruments an air 
of grace quite foreign to the best efforts of his 
brother German makers. In the sound-hole and 
scroll is observable his seeming desire to leave 
behind the German preferences ; and although 
it must be admitted that he was but partially 
successful in his endeavours to stamp out early 
tendencies, the connoisseur cannot but be im- 
pressed with the results of the artist's manipu- 
lations. Had such skill been exercised on a 
form nearer akin to the Italian, the result would 
have been perfect. 

Prior to the publication of the interesting facts 
obtained by Herr S. Ruf, relative to the personal 
history of Jacob Stainer, we had no really 
reliable account of this famous maker. 1 The 

1 The notice of Jacob Stainer in the " Biographic Univer- 
selle des Musiciens " contains information supplied by J. B. 
Cartier, the well-known Violinist, which formed a portion 
of the history of the Violin which Cartier proposed 
publishing, also from notes made by Paul L. de Boisgelou, 
who brought together much curious information relative to 
music and musicians. 



276 THE VIOLIN 

industry and research of Herr Ruf has not 
only supplied all the ascertainable facts with 
regard to Stainer, but also served to trace the 
history of Stainer fiction. The last-mentioned 
portion of Herr Rufs labours is singularly in- 
structive as to the manner in which romance 
is spliced on to what is intended to be sober 
history, and which results oftentimes in the graft 
being rendered invisible, or even unsuspected. 
He tells us that the first mention of Jacob Stainer 
is that made by Johann Primisser, about a century 
after the death of the Violin-maker, and that he 
merely states that there lived in Absam in 1673 
a celebrated maker named Stainer. 

Early in the present century Counsellor Von 
Sardagna collected certain particulars concerning 
Stainer, which were published in 1822. He states 
that Stainer lived at Absam, that it is traditionally 
reported that he went to Venice or Cremona, and 
died a madman. It appears that this slight material 
was at once utilised for the manufacture of nearly 
all the romantic accounts of Stainer with which we 
are familiar. Herr Ruf says that in the year 1825 
there appeared in a German literary publication 
a poetical effusion entitled "Jacob Stainer," and 
that in 1829 Dr. Johann Schuler published a novel 
of great merit on the same subject. 

Herr Ruf states that August Lewald in 1835 
made the novel of Dr. Schuler the basis of the 
romantic account of Stainer, published in his 



GERMAN MAKERS 277 

"Guide Book to Tyrol," under the title of "An 
Evening in Absam," but without any acknowledg- 
ment whatever. Notwithstanding the growth of 
Stainer literature down to 1835, not a single his- 
torical fact concerning the maker had been brought 
to light. In the year 1839 Herr Ruf began his 
labours of research. He discovered at Hall a 
register of the parish of Absam, wherein he found 
all the information we possess as regards the birth 
and death of Stainer and his family, About this 
period the poem of Dr. Johann Schuler, " Jacob 
Stainer," was dramatised by Theodore Rabenalt. 
Other poems based on the same material appeared 
in 1843, Dut stiH the facts of Stainer's life were all 
but unknown. At length Herr Ruf was prevailed 
upon by Dr. Schafhaiilt (an ardent admirer and 
collector of Stainer's Violins) to prosecute his 
inquiries concerning the great maker. 

In the archives of the town and salt mines at 
Hall, Herr Ruf found much information, which he 
published in the local newspapers, the ephemeral 
nature of which naturally placed his valuable con- 
tributions beyond the reach of those likely to value 
them. In the meantime Nicolaus Diehl, of 
Hamburg, published a little book on Violins, 
into which was imported a portion of the romance 
traceable to the novels or poems on Stainer. Herr 
Ruf, feeling disappointed that his labours in dis- 
covering the facts relative to Stainer had failed 
to clear away the cloud of Stainer fiction, pub- 



278 THE VIOLIN 

lished in 1872 his book, " Der Geigenmacher Jacob 
Stainer von Absam in Tirol," which gives us a full 
account of his researches, and should have secured 
to him the full credit due to his industry. His 
facts, however, like the good fiction found in Dr. 
Schuler's novel, " Jacob Stainer," have been used 
by German writers on the subject of the Violin 
without any acknowledgment. Herr Ruf died 
at Hall in the year 1877. 

It is said that Stainer was apprenticed to an 
organ-builder at Innsbruck, but owing to his weak 
constitution he was unable to continue in the 
business, and chos,e instead the trade of Violin- 
making. Amongst the rumours concerning this 
maker may be mentioned that of his having been a 
pupil of Niccolo Amati. It is certain there is no 
direct evidence in support of it, neither is it shown 
that his work is founded on that of Amati. I am 
satisfied that Stainer was assisted neither by the 
Brothers Amati nor Niccolo Amati, and I am 
strengthened in this opinion by the steadfastly 
German character of a model which no pupil of 
Amati could have persisted in using, even though 
based on his earliest traditions. 

The marriage of Stainer took place October 7, 
1645. On the 9th of October, 1658, he was ap- 
pointed by the Archduke Leopold (of Austria, 
Governor of Tyrol) one of the " archducal servants," 
and on the 9th of January, 1669, he obtained from 
the Emperor the title of "Violin-maker to the 



GERMAN MAKERS 279 



Court." About this period he is said to have 
incurred the displeasure of the Jesuits, which led 
to his being accused of the crime of heresy. The 
accusation seems to have been based on the fact 
of books of a controversial kind chiefly Lutheran 
having been found in his possession. The 
penalty he suffered for daring to indulge in polem- 
ical literature was six months' imprisonment, and 
his future prospects were completely shattered. 
Prior to this misfortune he appears to have been 
in pecuniary difficulties, and frequently at law with 
one Salomon Hiibmer, of Kirzchdorf, from whom 
he had obtained money loans. In the year 1677 he 
petitioned the Emperor Leopold who was a great 
patron and lover of music to render him pecuniary 
assistance, but failed to procure it. Over-burdened 
with troubles, he was bereft of his reason, and died 
insane and insolvent in the year 1683. 

" Alas ! misfortunes travel in a train, 
And oft in life form one perpetual chain." 

His widow was left with a family of eight 
daughters, she dying in poverty in 1689, which 
chronological fact disposes of the fiction, so widely 
circulated, that in consequence of the great grief he 
experienced upon the death of his wife he withdrew 
from the world, and became an inmate of a Bene- 
dictine monastery, and that he made within its walls 
the famous instruments known as " Elector Stainers," 
which he presented to the twelve Electors. 



280 THE VIOLIN 

Whether he made them to order, in the usual 
manner, whether he presented them, or where he 
made them, matters little ; they are works of great 
merit, and need no mysterious surroundings to call 
attention to them. The followers of Stainer have 
been numerous, and are mentioned in the lists of 
German and English makers. Probably no maker 
is more mistaken than Stainer : the array of 
German instruments called by his name is at least 
ten times greater than the number he actually made. 
Nearly every high-built tub of a Violin sails under 
his colours. Instruments without any resemblance 
whatever to those of Stainer are accepted by the 
multitude as original Jacob Stainers. Much of this 
has arisen from the variety of style and work said 
to have been shown in the instruments of this 
maker. That this marked variety exists I do not 
believe. The pattern varies, but the same hand is 
traceable throughout. 

STAINER, Markus, Kufstein, Tyrol, about 1659, 
described as a brother of Jacob. He styled himself 
on his label " Citizen and Violin-maker." Citizen- 
ship carried with it special privileges, and this 
maker apparently recognised the honour by having 
" Burger " after his name. 

STAINER, Andreas, Absam, about 1660. Mention 
is made of a maker of Baryton Viols of this name. 

STAUGTINGER, Mathias W., Wiirzburg, about 
1671.. Maker of Viols and Lutes. 

STEININGER, Jacob, Frankfort, about 1775. Son- 



GERMAN MAKERS 281 

in-law of the Violin-maker Dopfer, and uncle of 
Nicolas Diehl, to whom he gave instructions in 
Violin-making. 

STEININGER, Franz, St. Petersburg, son of Jacob 
Steininger. 

STOSS, . Makers of this name worked at 

Prague, Vienna, and Fussen, about the end of the 
1 8th century. 

STOSS, Martin, Vienna, about 1824. Flat model, 
good workmanship. Stradivari pattern, indifferent 
varnish. 

STRAUBE, , Berlin, about 1775. 

STRAUSS, Joseph, Neustadt, about 1750. 

TIEFFENBRUCKER. There appear to have been 
several Lute-makers of this name working in the 
1 6th century in Germany and elsewhere. No 
genuine Violins are known. See DUIFFOPRUGCAR. 

TIELKE, Joachim, Hamburg, about 1539-92. 
The name of Tielke is associated with the most 
remarkable instruments of the Lute and Guitar kind 
ever produced in relation to rich and chaste orna- 
mentation. It is said there are glowing accounts in 
old German books of the magnificent instruments 
by Tielke, with elaborate designs in silver, gold, 
and jewels. 1 The ornamentation and workmanship 
seen in the best instruments of this maker bear the 
impress of Italian art of a high order, and evidence 
the employment of Italian draughtsmen by the 

1 Engel's " Descriptive Catalogue of the Musical Instru- 
ments in Kensington Museum," 1874. 



282 THE VIOLIN 

house of Tielke. In the collection of instruments 
at Kensington is a Chiterna (an instrument of the 
Lute kind) of this make. The body is ornamented 
with tortoiseshell, with mythological figures in ivory 
and precious stones. It is signed, and dated 1539. 
In the possession of Mr. George Donaldson is a 
Guitar of this maker, signed, and dated 1592, which 
is considered to be the most artistic and highly 
ornamented work known by Joachim Tielke. It 
is wonderfully preserved, and admirably shows the 
style and character of the art-work of the period. 

TIELKE, Joachim, Hamburg, about 1660-86. 
Viol and Violin maker. The dates met with on 
the instruments signed " Tielke " cover a period of 
upwards of a century and a half, and thus evidence 
the existence of the house, in connection with the 
manufacture of musical instruments, through two or 
more generations. There is, of this maker, a Viola 
di Bordone in the collection at Kensington, dated 
1686. Mention is made by F6tis of a Violin dated 
1670, which was in the possession of Andre" of 
Offenbach; and a Chiterna dated 1676, similar to 
that in the Kensington collection, is owned by Mr. 
George Donaldson. M. Chouquet, in his catalogue 
of the collection of instruments at the Conserva- 
toire, Paris, refers to a Lute (No. 136) by Tielke. 

VOEL, E., Mayence, about 1840. Excellent work- 
manship, scroll well cut. Stradivari model. The 
character of work is not unlikethat of Bernard Fendt. 

VOGEL, Wolfgang, Nuremberg, 1650. 



GERMAN MAKERS 283 

VOGLER, Johann Georg, Wiirzburg, about 1750. 

Johann Georg Vogler, Lauten 
und Geigenmacher in Wiirzburg. 17 

VOIGT, Martin, Hamburg, about I726. 1 
WAGNER, Joseph, 1730, Constance. 
WEICKERT, Halle, 1800. 

WEIGERT, , Lintz, about 1721. Maker of 

Viols. 

WEISS, Jacob, Salzburg, i8th century. 

Jacob Weiss, Lauten und 
Geigenmacher in Salzburg. 

WENGER, G. F., Salzburg, i8th century. 
WIDHALM, Leopold, Nuremburg, i8th century. 

One of the best 

Leopold Widhalm Lauten und . r o. 

Geigenmacher, Nurnberg Fecit, A. "nitatOFS of Stamer. 

The wood is fre- 
quently handsome, the work finished with care. 
Varnish, although wanting the delicacy of that of 
Stainer, is generally of good quality ; its colour is 
mostly pale red. Nearly all his instruments are 
branded with the initials inside. His name has 
frequently been spelt Withalm. 

WITTING, J. G., Mittenwald, about 1775. 

WYEMANN, Cornelius, Amsterdam, i8th century. 

ZWERGER, Antoni, Mittenwald, about 1750. 
Neat work, good wood, varnish of the character 
of that seen on the instruments of Kloz. 

1 About thirty makers named Voigt or Voight hail from 
Germany, some contemporary and others dating from the 
i8th and i9th centuries. Their work is not of sufficient 
importance to require special notice. EDITORS. 



SECTION XI 
The English School 

IT is somewhat remarkable that the Continental 
writers on the Violin should have omitted to 
mention any English maker, either ancient or 
modern. Such an omission must have occurred 
either from want of information concerning our best 
makers, or, if known, they must have been deemed 
unworthy of the notice of our foreign friends. 
There is no mention of an English maker in the 
work of Fe'tis, " Antoine Stradivari," 1856, although 
numerous very inferior German and Italian makers 
are quoted. The same omission is also conspicuous 
in " Luthomonographie Historique et Raisonne"," 
1856, and Otto's " Ueber den Bau der Bogeninstru- 
mente, " &c., 1828. It may be that Continental 
connoisseurs have credited themselves with the 
works of our best makers, and expatriated them, 
while they have inexorably allowed bad English 
Fiddles to retain their nationality. However, it is 
my desire that my foreign brothers should be 
enlightened on this point, and in all candour 



THE ENGLISH SCHOOL 285 

informed of the array of makers that England has 
at different times produced, and is yet capable of 
producing, did but the new Violin command the 
price that would be a fair return for the time and 
skill required in the production of an instrument at 
once useful and artistic. It will be my endeavour 
to show forth the qualities of those of our makers 
whose names, as yet, seem never to have crossed 
the Channel, so that when these pages on the 
English School are read by distant connoisseurs, 
and the merits and shortcomings of the makers 
therein are fairly weighed by them, the good shall 
be found so to outweigh the indifferent as to 
entirely change the opinions formed of us as makers 
of the leading instrument. 

Until the early nineteenth century makers of 
Violins in England would appear to have been com- 
paratively numerous, if we take into consideration 
the undeveloped state of stringed instrument music 
at that period in this country. Among those makers 
were men of no ordinary genius men who worked 
lovingly, guided by motives distinct from commercial 
gain, so long as they were allowed to live by their 
work. When, however, the duties on foreign 
musical instruments were removed, the effect was to 
partially swamp the gallant little band of Fiddle- 
makers, who were quite unable to compete with the 
French and German makers in price (not excellence, 
be it distinctly understood, for we were undoubtedly 
ahead of our foreign competitors, both in style and 



286 THE VIOLIN 

finish, at this period). The prices commanded 
by many English makers previous to the repeal of 
the duty were thoroughly remunerative. Five to 
twenty pounds were given for English Violins, while 
Violoncellos and Tenors commanded prices pro- 
portionately high. The English Violin-makers were 
thus enabled to bestow artistic care in the making 
of their instruments. When, however, they were 
suddenly called upon to compete on equal terms 
with a legion of foreign manufacturers, the result 
was not so much that their ardour was damped, as 
that they themselves were extinguished, and served 
as another instance of the truth of the adage that 
"the good of the many is the bane of the few." 

In matters of magnitude, whether artistic or 
otherwise, competition is undoubtedly healthy, there 
being always a small body of patrons who are 
willing to check the tendency to deteriorate, common 
to all productions, by . encouraging the worker with 
extra remuneration, in order that a high degree of ex- 
cellence may be maintained ; but in matters confined 
to a small circle, as in the case of Violin-making, 
the number of those willing to encourage artistic 
workmanship is so minute as to fail even to support 
one maker of excellence, and thus, when deprived 
suddenly of its legitimate protection, the art, with 
other similar handicrafts, must drift into decadence. 
If we look around the Violin world, it is every- 
where much the same. In Italy there is no 
Stradivari in embryo, in France no coming Lupot, 



THE ENGLISH SCHOOL 287 

in Germany no Jacob Stainer, and in England no 
future Banks or Forster. Why so ? The answer 
is twofold. Partly there is fault in the demand, 
arising from the marked preference of this age for 
cheapness at the expense of goodness ; partly, too, 
there is a fault in the supply, a foolish desire on the 
part of the makers to give maturity to their 
instruments, wherein they always completely fail, 
yet they will not give up their conceit. Here, 
again, were we dealing with matters of greater 
magnitude, the evil influence would be lessened, 
the artistic impulses would still be felt, though in a 
less degree ; whereas so contracted is the circle of 
the Violin world, that under any stress the support 
given to makers willing to bestow an artist's care 
on their work is totally inadequate. 

The case of modern Violin-makers is unfortunate. 
Old Violins being immeasurably superior to modern 
productions, the demand must necessarily set 
steadily for the former, and the modern maker has 
only the few patrons of new work to support him. 
It cannot be expected that the players of to-day 
should patronise the modern Violin in order that 
the next generation should reap the benefit. 
Years since it was quite a different matter. The 
makers were well paid for their work, and new 
instruments were then made to supply wants similar 
to those which the horrid Mirecourt or Saxon copy 
fulfils at present. As with other things, so is it also 
with Violins ; if they are to be produced with the 



288 THE VIOLIN 

stamp of artistic merit, they must be paid for accord- 
ingly ; without patronage the worker necessarily 
becomes careless. Finding that his skill fails to 
attract attention, he gradually sinks down into the 
mere routine of the ordinary workman. When 
Italy shone brightest in art, the patronage and 
remuneration which the workers received was 
considerable. Had it been otherwise, the powers 
of its Raffaele, its Cellini, and last (though not 
least to the admirers of the Violin), its Stradivari, 
would have remained simply dormant. Art, like 
commerce, is regulated in a great measure by 
supply and demand. In Raffaele's day, sacred 
subjects were in demand ; the Church was his great 
patron, and aided him in bringing forth the gift 
which nature had implanted within him. In modern 
times, landscape-painting became the favoured sub- 
ject, particularly in England ; the result of which 
preference has been to place us in the foremost rank 
in that branch of art. The stage furnishes another 
instance of the effect that patronage has in bringing 
forth latent talent. If the history of dramatic art 
be traced, it will be found that its chief works were 
written when the taste of an appreciative public 
could be securely counted upon. As it waned, so 
the writers of merit became rarer ; or perhaps it 
would be more correct to say, the plays produced 
became less meritorious, the authors being con- 
strained to pander to the prevailing tastes. 

As further evidence of the effect of patronage on 



THE ENGLISH SCHOOL 289 

art, a case in point is found in the manufacture of 
Venetian glass. The Venetians, centuries ago, 
became famous for their works in glass, and the 
patronage they enjoyed was world-wide ; but their 
country being thrown into an unsettled condition, 
capital drifted from it, until the blowing of glass, 
together with other industries, was comparatively 
extinguished. Within recent years the art of 
making glass has shown signs, even in Venice 
itself, of reviving with all its former vigour in the 
workshops of Salviati, the success of which is due in 
great measure to English capital. 

With regard to English Violin manufacture, there 
would be no reason why Violins should not, at the 
present moment, be produced in England which 
should fully reach the standard of merit maintained 
in our forefathers' days, if only the patronage of 
the art occupied a larger area. The present 
dearth of English makers does not arise from any 
national want of talent for this particular handicraft; 
in fact, we have plenty of men quite as enthusiastic 
as our foreign friends for a vocation which, in 
England also, must be pronounced to be alike 
venerable in its antiquity and famed for the dex- 
terity of its genius. 

The earliest makers of Viols in England seem to 
have been Jay, Smith, Bolles, Ross, Addison, and 
Shaw, names thoroughly British. We may take 
this as good evidence that the making of Viols in 
England originated with the English, and was not 

u 



290 THE VIOLIN 

commenced by settlers from the Continent. Doubt- 
less the form of the English Viol and its brethren 
was taken from the Brescian makers, there being 
much affinity between these classes of instruments. 
In the few Violins extant by Christopher Wise 
the Italian character is very striking. In them we 
see a flat model, excellent outline, and varnish of 
good quality. The Viols of Jay have the same 
Italian character. Later on we have names of 
some reputation Ray man, Urquhart, and Barak 
Norman. In the absence of any direct evidence 
as regards the nationality of these makers it is 
requisite to endeavour to trace the style belonging 
to their works. It will be observed that there was 
a great improvement in the style of work and 
varnish of instruments made in England, com- 
mencing with the time of Rayman, and it is prob- 
able that this step in advance was obtained from 
intercourse with Italy or the German Tyrol. 
Starting with Rayman, there is a German ring in 
the name which makes me think that he came from 
Germany, and, if so, brought with him the semi- 
Italian character of work common to the makers 
who lived so near Brescia. If the work and 
style of Rayman be carefully examined, it will 
be seen that there is much in common with 
the inferior Brescian makers. The outline is 
rugged, the sound-hole is of that Gothic form 
peculiar to Brescia ; the head is distinct from that 
of the early English type. At the same period 



THE ENGLISH SCHOOL 291 

Urquhart made instruments of great merit, the 
varnish of which is superior to that of Rayman, 
but is evidently composed of similar ingredients. 
Its superiority may have arisen from a different 
mode of mixing only. The name of Urquhart has 
a North British sound, and it is probable that he 
was born in Scotland, and settled in London as an 
assistant to Rayman, who would impart to him the 
style of foreign work. 

The semi- Italian character pervading the instru- 
ments made in England at this period seems to 
have culminated in the productions of Barak 
Norman, whose best works bear even a more 
marked Brescian character than those of Rayman. 
The model varies very much, sometimes being 
high, at other times very flat ; in the latter case the 
results are instruments of the Maggini type. Barak 
Norman frequently double-purfled his instruments, 
and inserted a device in the purfling, evidently 
following Maggini in these particulars. With 
Barak Norman ends the list of English copyists 
of the Brescian makers. 

We now arrive at the copyists of Jacob Stainer 
and the Amati, a class of makers who possessed 
great abilities, and knew - how to use them. The 
first name to be mentioned is Benjamin Banks, of 
Salisbury, who may with propriety be termed the 
English Amati. He was the first English maker 
who recognised the superior form of Amati's model 
over that of Stainer, and devoted all his energies 



292 THE VIOLIN 

to successful imitation. Too much praise cannot 
be lavished on Banks for the example which he 
selected for himself and his fellow-makers. 

Next follow the names of Foster, Duke, Hill, 
Wamsley, Betts, Gilkes, Hart, and Kennedy, to- 
gether with those of Panormo, Fendt, and Lott, 
who, although not born in England, passed the 
greater part of their lives here, and therefore 
require to be classed with the English School. 
The mention of these makers will bring the reader 
to the present time. 

Upon scanning this goodly list, there will be 
found ample evidence that we in England have had 
makers of sufficient merit to entitle us to rank as a 
distinct school a school of no mean order. We 
may therefore assume that the Continental writers 
who from time to time have published lists of 
makers of the Violin, and have invariably ignored 
England, have erred through want of information 
regarding the capabilities of our makers, both 
ancient and modern. 

The following list will be found to enumerate 
nearly the whole of the English makers, and 
indicate the distinctive character of their respective 
works. 



SECTION XII 
English Makers 
A BSAM, Thomas, Wakefield, 1833. 

** Made by 

Thomas Absam, 

Wakefield, Feb. 14, 

1833- 

ADAMS, Garmouth, Scotland, 1800. 

ADDISON, William, London, 1670. 

AIRETON, Edmund. Was originally employed in 
the workshop of Peter Wamsley, at the " Harp and 
Hautboy," in Piccadilly. He made a great many 
excellent Violins and Violoncellos, and chiefly 
copied Amati. Varnish of fair quality ; colour 
yellow. He died at the advanced age of 80, in 
the year 1807. 

ALDRED, , about 1560. Maker of Viols. 

ASKEY, Samuel, London, about 1825. 

BAINES, about 1780. 

BAKER, , Oxford. Mention is made of a Viol 

of this maker in the catalogue of the music and 
instruments of Tom Britton, the small-coal man. 

BALLANTINE, Edinburgh and Glasgow, 1850. 



293 



294 THE VIOLIN 

BANKS, Benjamin, Salisbury, born 1727, died 1795. 
To this famous maker must be given the foremost 
place in the English School. He was a thorough 
artist, and would not have been thought lightly of 
had he worked in Cremona's school, and been 
judged by its standard. This may be considered 

excessive praise of 

Benjamin Banks, 

Musical Instrument Maker our native maker ; 

In Catherine Street, Salisbury. b ut an unprejudiced 
1780. J 

judge 01 work need 

only turn to the best specimens of Banks's instru- 
ments, and he will confess that I have merely 
recorded z.fact. 

Banks is, again, one of the many instances of 
men who have gained a lasting reputation, but 
whose histories have never reached the light to 
which their names have attained. How interesting 
would it be to obtain the name of his master in the 
knowledge of making instruments ! No clue what- 
ever remains by which we could arrive at a satisfac- 
tory conclusion on this point. That he was an 
enthusiast in his art is certain, and also that he was 
aware to some extent that he possessed talent of no 
mean description. This is evidenced by the fact 
that many of his instruments are branded with 
the letters B. B. in several places, as though he 
felt that sooner or later his works would be highly 
esteemed, and would survive base imitations, and 
that by carefully branding them he might prevent 
any doubt as to their author. Many of his best 



ENGLISH MAKERS 295 

instruments are found to have no brand : it would 
seem, therefore, that he did not so mark them for 
some time. He appears to have early shown a 
preference for the model of Niccolo Amati, and 
laboured unceasingly in imitation of him, until he 
copied him with an exactness difficult to surpass. 
Now that time has mellowed his best works, they 
might pass as original Amatis with those not per- 
fectly versed in the characteristics of the latter. 
Many German makers excelled as copyists of 
Amati ; but these makers chiefly failed in their 
varnish, whereas Banks was most happy in this 
particular, both as regards colour and quality. If 
his varnish be closely examined, its purity and 
richness of colour are readily seen. It has all the 
characteristics of fine Italian varnish, being beauti- 
fully transparent, mellow, and rich in its varieties 
of tints. It must be distinctly understood that 
these remarks apply only to the very finest works 
of this maker, there being many specimens which 
bear the label of Banks in the framing of which he 
probably took but a small share, leaving the chief 
part to be done by his son and others. Banks 
cannot be considered as having been successful in 
the use of his varnish on the bellies of his instru- 
ments, as he has allowed it to clog the fibre, a blemish 
which affects the appearance very much, and has 
been the means of casting discredit on the varnish 
among those unacquainted with the real cause. 
The modelling is executed with skill. Fortunately, 



296 THE VIOLIN 

sufficient wood has been left in his instruments to 
enable time to exert its beneficial effects, a desidera- 
tum overlooked by many makers of good repute. 
The only feature of his work which can be con- 
sidered as wanting in merit is the scroll, which is 
somewhat cramped, and fails to convey the 
meaning intended, viz., the following of Amati ; 
but as this is a point having reference to appear- 
ance, and therefore solely affecting the connoisseur, 
it may be passed over lightly, and the more so 
when we consider that Banks was not the only 
clever workman who has failed in head-cutting. 
He made Violins, Tenors, and Violoncellos, all 
excellent ; but the last-named have the preference. 
His large Violoncellos are the best ; those of the 
smaller pattern are equally well made, but lack 
depth of tone. The red-varnished instruments are 
the favourites. 

BANKS, Benjamin, son of the above, born in 
September, 1754; died January, 1820. Worked 
many years with his father at Salisbury, .afterwards 
removed to London, and lived at 30, Sherrard 
Street, Golden Square. 

BANKS, James. Brother of the above. For 

some years carried 

James and Henry Banks, on the business of 

Musical Instrument Makers hi father 



and Music Sellers, 

18 Salisbury. 02 bury, in conjunction 

with his brother 
Henry. They ultimately sold the business and 



ENGLISH MAKERS 297 

removed to Liverpool. The instruments of James 
and Henry Banks are of average merit. 

BARNES, Robert, 1710. Worked with Thomas 
Smith at the " Harp and Hautboy " in Piccadilly. 
Afterwards partner with John Norris. 

BARRETT, John, 1714. An average workman, 
who followed the model of Stainer. His shop 

bore the sign of the 
" Harp and Crown." 

John Barrett, at the Harp and 

Crown in Pickadiliy, 17 Barrett was one oi 

the earliest copyists 

Made by John Barrett at ye Harp & o f Stainer, and in 
Crown in Pickadiliy, London, 17 . , 

the chain of bnglish 
makers is linked with 

Barak Norman and Nathaniel Cross. The wood is 
generally of a very good quality, the varnish yellow. 
BARTON, George, Old Bailey, London, about 
1780-1810. 

BETTS, John, born 1755, at Stamford, Lincoln- 
shire, died in 1823. Became a "pupil of Richard 

Duke. He com- 
jo. Betts, No. 2, menced business in 

near Northgate the r *.u i. r 

Royal Exchange, One f the sh P S f 

London, 17 the Royal Exchange, 

where he soon en- 
joyed considerable patronage. John Betts does 
not appear to have made a great number of in- 
struments, but employed many workmen, into 
whose instruments he inserted his trade label. He 
was, perhaps, the earliest London dealer in Italian 



298 THE VIOLIN 

instruments. His quaintly-worded business card 
runs : 



" John Belts, Real Musical Instrument Maker, at the Violin and 
German Flute, No. 2, under the North Piazza of the Royal Exchange, 
makes in the neatest manner, Violins the patterns of Antonius Stradi- 
varius, Hieronymus Amati, Jacobus Stainer, and Tyrols. Equal 
for the fine, full, mellow tone to those made in Cremona. Tenors, 
Violoncellos, Pentachords, &c., &c., &c." 



The sound-holes of Betts' instruments are rather 
wide ; broad purfling ; scroll well cut. 

BETTS, Edward, nephew of John Betts ; was 
a pupil of Richard Duke, whose work he copied 
with considerable skill. Of course, in trying to 
imitate Duke he was copying Amati, Richard Duke 
having spent his life in working after the Amati 
pattern, without attempting to model for himself. 
The care bestowed by Edward Betts on his in- 
struments was of no ordinary kind. The work- 
manship throughout is of the most delicate 
description ; indeed, it may be said that neatness 
is gained at the expense of individuality in many 
of his works. Each part is faultless in finish, 
but when viewed as a whole the result is too 
mechanical, giving as it does the notion of its 
having been turned out of a mould. Nevertheless, 
this maker takes rank with the foremost of the 
English copyists, and in his instruments we have 
as good specimens of undisguised work as can 
be readily found. They will be yearly more 
valued. 



ENGLISH MAKERS 299 

BOLLES, . An early maker of Lutes and 

Viols. 

BOOTH, William, 1779 to about 1858, Leeds. 

BOOTH, , son of the above, Leeds, died 1856. 

BOUCHER, , London, 1764. 

BROWN, James, London, born 1770, died 1734. 
Worked with Thomas Kennedy. 

BROWN, James, London, son of the above, born 
1786, died 1860. 

BROWNE, John, London, about 1743. Worked 
at the sign of the " Black Lion," Cornhill. Good 
work. Amati pattern. Scroll well cut ; hard 
varnish. 

CAHUSAC, , London, 1788. Associated with 

the sons of Banks. 

CARTER, John, London, 1789, worked with John 
Betts, and afterwards at Drury Lane on his own 
account. 

CHALLONER, Thomas, London. Similar to 
Wamsley. 

COLE, Thomas, London, 1690. 

Thomas Cole, near Fetter Lane 
In Holborn, 16 

COLE, James, Manchester, i9th century. 
COLLIER, Samuel, 1750. 
COLLIER, Thomas, 1775. 
COLLINGWOOD, Joseph, London, 1760. 
CONWAY, William, 1750. 

CORSBY, , Northampton, 1780. Chiefly made 

Double- Basses. 



300 THE VIOLIN 

CORSBY, George. Lived upwards of half a cen- 
tury in Princes Street, Leicester Square, where 
he worked and dealt in old instruments. 

CRAMOND, Charles, Aberdeen, ipth century. 

CRASK, George, Manchester. He made a large 
number of instruments, chiefly imitations. 

CROSS, Nathaniel, London, about 1700-50. 
Worked with Barak Norman. He made several 
good Violins. Purfling narrow; excellent scroll. 

CROWTHER, John, 1760-1810. 

CUTHBERT, London, i7th century. Maker of 
Viols and Violins. Many of the latter have merit. 
Model flat, and wood of good quality. Very dark 
varnish. 

DAVIDSON, Hay, Huntley, 1870. 

DAVIS, Richard. Worked with Norris and 
Barnes. 

DAVIS, William, London. Succeeded Richard 
Davis in the business now carried on by Edward 
Withers. 

DEARLOVE, Mark, Leeds. 

Dearlove and Fryer, 

Musical Instrument Manufacturers, 

Boar Lane, Leeds, 1828. 

DELANY, John, Dublin. Used two kinds of 
labels, one of them very small 

Made by John Delany, 
No. 17, Britain Street, Dublin. 1808. 

In the other, which is larger, he states that he 



ENGLISH MAKERS 301 

made Violins that his name might be of immortal 
memory. 

Made by John Delany, 
In order to perpetuate his memory in future ages. 

Dublin. 1808. 

Liberty to all the world 

black and white. 

DENNIS, Jesse, London, 1805. 

DEVEREUX, John, Melbourne. When in England 
he worked with B. Simon Fendt. 

DICKINSON, Edward, London, 1750. Made 
instruments of average merit. The model is 
high. 

Edward Dickinson, 

Maker, at the Harp and Crown in the Strand, 

near Exeter Change, 

London. 17 

DICKESON, John, 1750-80, a native of Stir- 
ling. He would seem to have lived in various 
places, some instruments dating from London and 
some from Cambridge. He was an excellent 
workman, and chiefly copied Amati. His work 
much resembles that of Cappa. 

DITTON, London, about 1700. Mention is made 
of an instrument by this maker in Tom Britton's 
Catalogue. 

DODD, Thomas, son of Edward Dodd, of 
Sheffield. He was not a maker of Violins. 
Numerous instruments bear his name, but they 



302 THE VIOLIN 

are the work of John Lott and Bernard Fendt. 

The merit of these 

T. Dodd, 

Violin, violoncello instruments is of the 

and Bow Maker, highest order, and 

New Street, 

Covent Garden. they are justly ap- 

preciated by both 

player and connoisseur. Thomas Dodd deserves 
to be mentioned in terms of high praise, not- 
withstanding that the work was not executed by 
him, for his judgment was brought to bear upon 
the manufacture during its various stages, and 
more particularly in the varnishing, in which he 
took the liveliest interest. He had a method of 
mixing colours, the superior qualities of which he 
seems to have fully known, if we may judge from 
the note on his labels, which runs thus : " The only 
possessor of the recipe for preparing the original 
Cremona varnish. Instruments improved and 
repaired." This undoubtedly savours of presump- 
tion, and is certainly wide of the truth. Never- 
theless there is ample evidence that the varnish 
used by Thomas Dodd was very excellent, and 
had a rich appearance rarely to be met with in 
instruments of the English school. Dodd was 
encouraged in the art of varnish-making by 
persons of taste, who readily admitted the superior 
qualities of his composition, and paid him a 
handsome price for his instruments. He was thus 
enabled to gratify his taste in his productions by 
sparing no means to improve them. He ultimately 



ENGLISH MAKERS 303 

attained such a reputation for his instruments as 
to command no less a sum than ^40 or ^50 for 
a Violoncello. Commanding such prices, it is 
evident that he spared no expense, or, what was 
to him a matter of still greater importance, no time. 
He was most particular in receiving the instruments 
in that incomplete stage known in the trade as 
"in the white," i.e., without varnish. He would 
then carefully varnish them with his own hands, 
guarding most warily the treasured secret of the 
composition of his varnish. That he never departed 
from this practice may be inferred from the fact 
that the varnish made by the workmen in his 
employ, apart from the establishment, for their 
own instruments, is of an entirely different stamp, 
and evidently shows that they were not in their 
master's secrets. 

The instruments bearing the Dodd label are 
not valued to the extent of their deserts, and 
there can be but little doubt that in the course 
of time they will be valued according to their 
true merits. They were made by men of excep- 
tional talent, who were neither restricted in price 
nor material. Under such favourable conditions 
the results could not fail to be good. 

DODD, Thomas, London. Son of Thomas 
Dodd, musical instrument dealer, of St. Martin's 
Lane. The father, although not a maker of 
Violins, possessed excellent judgment, both as 
regards work and makers, which enabled his son 



304 THE VIOLIN 

to profit considerably during his early years whilst 
working with Fendt and Lott. 
DORANT, William, London, 1814. 
DUKE, Richard, worked from 1750-80. The 
name of this maker has long been a household 

word with English 
Richd Duke, Violinists both 

Londoni fecit 17 

amateur and pro- 
fessional. Who has not got a friend who is the 
fortunate owner of a veritable "Duke"? The 
fame of His Majesty Antonio Stradivari himself 
is not greater than that of Richard Duke in the 
eyes of many a Fiddle fancier. From his earliest 

fiddling days the 

Richard Duke. Maker, c -r-\ i i 

., T . A name of Duke be- 

Holborn, London. Ann. 17 

came familiar to him ; 

he has heard more of him than of Stradivari, 
whom he somehow confuses with Cremona. He 
fondly imagines that Cremona was a celebrated 
maker, and Stradivari something else ; inquires, 
and becomes more confused, and returns again 
to " Duke," with whom he is thoroughly at 
home. 

Many excellent judges have wondered how it 
came to pass that Richard Duke should have 
been so highly valued, there being, in their es- 
timation, so little amongst his remains worthy of 
the reputation he gained. The truth is that no 
maker, with the exception of the great Cremon- 
ese artists, has been so persistently counterfeited. 



ENGLISH MAKERS 305 

The name of Duke has been stamped upon every 
wretched nondescript, until judges who had not 
the opportunity of seeing the genuine article 
mistook the copies for the original, and hence 
the confusion. When, however, a really fine 
specimen of Duke is once seen, it is not likkly 
to be forgotten. As copies of Amati such instru- 
ments are scarcely surpassed, varnish, work, and 
material being of the best description. The 
copies of Stainer were not so successful. 

DUKE, Richard, London. Son of the above. 

DUNCAN, , Aberdeen, 1762. 

DUNCAN, George, Glasgow, contemporary. 

EGLINGTON, , London, 1800. 

EVANS, Richard, London, 1750. His label is a 
curiosity 

Maid in the Paris of 

Lanirhengel, by Richard 

Evans, Instrument maker, 

in the year 17 

FENDT, Bernard, born at Innsbruck, in the 
Tyrol, 1756, died 1832. He was evidently a 
born Fiddle-maker, genius being stamped, in a 
greater or less degree, upon all his works. To 
Thomas Dodd belongs the credit of bringing his 
talent into play. Dodd obtained the services of 
Fendt upon his arrival in England, which the 
latter reached at an early age. He remained 
with Dodd many years, frequently making instru- 
ments with John Frederick Lott. The instruments 
so made bear the label of Thomas Dodd. Lott 

x 



306 v THE VIOLIN 

being also a German, reciprocity of feeling 
sprung up between him and Fendt, which in- 
duced Lott to exchange the business to which 
he was brought up for that which his fellow 
countryman Fendt had adopted, and henceforth 
to make Violins instead of cabinets. By securing 
the services of these admirable workmen, Dodd 
reaped a rich harvest. He found in them men 
capable of carrying out his instructions with an 
exactness that could not be surpassed. Dodd 
was unable to use the tools himself, but in 
Fendt and Lott he had men who were con- 
summate masters of them. When the instruments 
were finished, as far as construction was concerned, 
they were clothed in coats of the master's livery 
" Dodd's varnish," the secret of making which 
he kept carefully to himself. With these coats 
of varnish upon them the work was doubly 
effective, and every point of excellence was made 
to shine with the happiest effect. Upon leaving 
the workshop of Thomas Dodd, Bernard Fendt 
worked for John Betts, making many of those 
copies of Amati which are associated with the 
name of Betts, and which have so high a value. 
Although Fendt was German by birth, his style 
of work cannot be considered as German in cha- 
racter. Having early quitted his post of trade in 
Paris for England, and having in this country 
placed himself under the guidance of Dodd, who 
steadfastly kept before his workmen the originals 



ENGLISH MAKERS 307 

of the great Italian masters for models, his work 
acquired a distinctive stamp of its own, and in its 
turn gave rise to a new and independent class 
of makers. 

FENDT, Bernard Simon, London, born in 1800, 
died in 1852. Son of the above. He was an 
excellent workman. It is to be regretted that he 
did not follow the excellent example set by his 
father, and let time do its work, without interrup- 
tion, upon his instruments. Had he done so they 
would, in many instances, have been equal to 
those of his parent ; but, unfortunately, he worked 
when the mania for obtaining supposed maturity 
by artificial means was at its height, and shared 
the general infatuation, and, in consequence, very 
frequently destroyed all the stamina of his instru- 
ments. Subsequently he became a partner of 
George Purdy, and carried on a joint business 
at Finch Lane, in the City of London, from 
whence most of his best instruments date. Purdy 
and Fendt had also a shop in the West End 
about 1843. He was a most assiduous worker. 
The number of Violins, Tenors, Violoncellos, and 
Double- Basses that he made was very great ; 
indeed, his reputation would have been greater 
had he been content to have made fewer in- 
struments and to have exercised more general 
care. His copies of Guarneri are most numer- 
ous, numbering some hundreds. They are mostly 
varnished with a glaring red colour, of a hard 



3o8 THE VIOLIN 

nature. He made many good Double- Basses of 
the Gasparo da Salo form, the varnish on which 
is superior to that on his Violins. He made also 
an excellent quartette of instruments Violin, Viola, 
Violoncello, and Double-Bass for the Exhibition 
of 1851. They were certainly the best contem- 
porary instruments exhibited, but he failed to 
obtain the prize medal. 

FENDT, Martin, London, born 1812, died 1845. 
Brother of the above. Worked for Betts. 

FENDT, Jacob, London, born 1815, died 1849. 
Third son of Bernard Fendt. The best maker 
among the sons of Bernard. His instruments are 
beautifully finished, and free from the stereotyped 
character belonging to those of his brother Bernard. 
As specimens of the imitator's art they are un- 
surpassed. One cannot but regret that such a 
consummate workman should have been obliged 
to waste his energies in making new work resemble 
that of a hundred years before. The patronage 
that he obtained was not of much value, but had 
he brought his work into the market in its natural 
condition he could not have lived by his trade. 
He was, therefore, compelled to foster that which 
he no doubt felt to be degrading. The copies 
of Stradivari by Jacob Fendt are among his best 
efforts. The work is well done ; the discolora- 
tion of the wood cleverly managed, the effects of 
wear counterfeited with greater skill than had 
ever been done before, and finally, an amount 



ENGLISH MAKERS . 309 

of style is thrown into the work which transcends 
the ingenuity of any other copyist. Had he been 
allowed to copy the form of the old masters, as 
Lupot did, without imitating the actual wear of 
the instrument, we should have had a valuable 
addition to our present stock of instruments of the 
Panormo class. 

FENDT, Francis, London. Fourth son of Ber- 
nard ; also worked in Liverpool about 1856. 

FENDT, William, London, born 1833, died 1852. 
Son of Bernard Simon Fendt. Was an excellent 
workman, and assisted his father in the manufac- 
ture of several of his Double-Basses. 

FERGUSON, Donald, Huntley, Aberdeenshife. 

FIRTH, G., Leeds, 1836. 

FORSTER, William, Brampton, 1713-1801. A 
maker of spinning-wheels and Violins. 

FORSTER, William, born in 1713, died 1801. 

The family of the 
William Forster, Forsters have played 

Violin Maker, 

in Brampton. no unimportant part 

in the history of 

Violins. The attention they commanded as makers, 
both from artists and amateurs, has probably 
never been equalled in England. Their instru- 
ments claimed attention from the moment they 
left their makers' hands, their construction being 
excellent in every way. William Forster was a 
native of Brampton, in Cumberland, where he 
followed the trade of a spinning-wheel maker, 



310 THE VIOLIN 

occupying his spare time in the making and repair- 
ing of Violins and musical instruments generally. 
His labours, as far as they relate to Violin-making, 
appear to have been of a very unpretending nature, 
but they served to impart a taste for the art to 
his son William, who was the best maker of the 
family. 

FORSTER, William, London, born 1739, died 
1807. Son of William Forster mentioned above. 

Worked with his 

William Forster, 

Violin Maker, father at Brampton 

in St. Martin's Lane, London, m Cumberland, mak- 
17 

ing spinning-wheels 

and Violins two singularly diverse occupations. 
It was, however, to the latter industry he gave 
the most attention, and he soon became the great 
maker of the neighbourhood. He afterwards 
added another string to his bow, viz., that of 
playing country-dances at the village festivities. 
Thus armed with three occupations, he must have 
been well employed. He seems to have early 
discovered that his abilities required a larger field 
in which to show themselves to advantage, and 
accordingly took the usual course in such circum- 
stances came to the Metropolis, in which he 
settled about the year 1759. He soon obtained 
employment at a musical instrument seller's on 
Tower Hill, and gave up, then and for ever, the 
making of spinning-wheels, while by throwing all 
his soul into the manufacture of Violins he soon 



ENGLISH MAKERS 311 

gave his master's patrons the highest satisfaction. 
He ultimately commenced business on his own 
behalf in the neighbourhood of Duke's Court, St. 
Martin's Lane, where his abilities attracted consider- 
able attention, and secured him the patronage 
of the dilettanti in the musical world. For several 
years he followed the path trodden by the makers 
of the period, and copied Stainer. His instruments 
of this date are very excellent both in workman- 
ship and material, but are not equal to those of 
the Amati pattern, which he commenced to make 
about the year 1770. These are beautiful works, 
and have a great charm from their being so varied. 
Some are copies of Antonio and Girolamo Amati, 
variously modelled ; others are copies of Niccolo 
Amati. The wood and varnish also vary very 
much, but the high standard of goodness is well 
maintained throughout. His varnish was, during 
the last twenty years of his life, very fine in quality, 
and in the manufacture of it he is said to have 
been assisted by a friend who was an excellent 
chemist. He made only four Double-Basses, three 
of which were executed for the private band of 
George III. Forster's instruments were the 
favourite equipment of Robert Lindley, and their 
value in his day was relatively far higher than at the 
present moment. When Lindley died attention was 
turned to Italian Violoncellos, and a vast number 
having been brought to England, the value of 
Forster's productions was very considerably depre- 



312 THE VIOLIN 

ciated ; now, however, that the cultivation of 
stringed instrument music has been so much 
extended, they are rapidly rising again to their 
former level, Italian instruments being a luxury 
not obtainable by every one, and age having so 
benefited the tone of Forster's Violoncellos as to 
render them excellent substitutes. 

FORSTER, William, London, born in 1764, died 

1824. Son of William 

William Forster, Junr., Violin, Forster, the second 
Violoncello, Tenor & Bow Maker, 

18 Also Music Seller No 43 of the family. Al- 
to their Royal Highnesses the though this maker 
Prince of Wales and the Duke of 

Cumberland. did not attain to the 

celebrity of his father, 

his instruments are often fully as good. The 
workmanship is very neat, and the modelling 
excellent, the varnish being equal to that on his 
father's instruments. 

FORSTER, William, London, born in 1788, died 
1824. Son of William Forster, mentioned above. 
He was a very good workman : he made but few 
instruments. 

FORSTER, Simon Andrew, London, born in 1801, 
died about 1870. Brother of William, mentioned 
above. He learned his business from his father 
and Samuel Gilkes, who worked for William 
Forster. He made several instruments between 
the years 1828 and 1840, which are of average 
merit. Best known as joint author with W. Sandys 
of a " History of the Violin" (London, 1864). 



ENGLISH MAKERS 313 

FRANKLAND, , London, about 1785. 

FURBER, , London. There were several 

makers of this family, some of whom worked 

for Betts, of the 

John Furber, Maker, Royal Exchange. 

13, John's Row, top of Brick Lane, , .. ' f , . 

Old St., Saint Luke. 1813. Many ot their in- 
struments are ex- 
cellent, and should unquestionably be more 
valued than they are. John Furber made several 
Violins of the grand Amati pattern, and also 
copied with much ability the "Betts" Stradivari, 
when the instrument belonged to Messrs. Betts 
in the Royal Exchange, for whom he worked. 

FURBER, Henry John, son of John Furber, 
London. He has made several excellent instru- 
ments, and maintained the character for good 
workmanship which has been associated with the 
name of Furber for upwards of a century. 

GIBBS, James, 1800-45. Worked for Samuel 
Gilkes and others. 

GILKES, Samuel, London, born in 1787, died in 
1827. Was born at Morton Pinkney, in North- 
amptonshire. He 

Gilkes. i 

From Forster's, became an appren- 

Violin and Violincello Maker, tice of Charles Harris, 
34, James Street, Buckingham Gate, i .. 1 i_ r i 

Westminster 8 wh S6 St y le he fo1 ' 

lowed to some extent. 

Upon leaving Harris he engaged himself to 
William Forster, making many instruments for 
him, retaining, however, all the features of the 



314 THE VIOLIN 

style of Harris. In the year 1810 he left the 
workshop of Forster, and commenced business on 
his own account in James Street, Buckingham 
Gate, where the few instruments bearing his name 
were made. Too much cannot be said in praise 
of much of the work of this excellent maker. The 
exquisite finish of many of his instruments evidences 
that the making of them was to him a labour of love. 
Amati was his favourite model. 

GILKES, William, London, born 1811, died 1875. 
Son of Samuel Gilkes. Has made a great number 
of instruments of various patterns, chiefly Double- 
Basses. 

GOUGH, Walter. An indifferent workman. 

HARBOUR, , London, about 1785. 

HARDIE, Matthew, Edinburgh, date from about 
1800. He was the best maker Scotland has had. 
The model is that of Amati ; the work throughout 
excellent. The linings are mostly of cedar. He 
died about 1825-26. 

HARDIE, Thomas, Edinburgh. Worked with his 
father, Matthew Hardie. He was born in 1804, 
died 1856. 

HARE, John, London. About 1700. His label 
shows that he was in partnership, his name being 
joined to that of Freeman, and the address is given 
as " Near the Royal Exchange, Cornhill, London." 
Much resembles the work and style of Urquhart. 
Varnish of fine quality. 

HARE, Joseph, London, probably a son of John 



ENGLISH MAKERS 315 

Hare, above-mentioned. Varnish of excellent 
quality. 

Joseph Hare, at y e Viol and Flute, 

near the Royal Exchange, in Cornhill, London. 

172 

HARRIS, Charles, London, 1800. This maker is 
known only to a few dealers, as he made chiefly for 
the wholesale merchants of his day. His name 
was rarely affixed to his instruments, but those 
thoroughly acquainted with his work agree in 
giving him a foremost place among the makers 
of this country. He was, like many other makers 
of that period, engaged in two occupations differing 
very much from each other, being at the same time 
a Custom-house officer and a maker of Violins. 
The former circumstance brought him into contact 
with mercantile men, and enabled him to obtain 
commissions to make Violins for the export trade. 
His business in this direction so increased that 
he obtained the services of his relative, Samuel 
Gilkes, as his assistant. He never aimed at 
producing a counterpart of the instrument that 
he copied by resorting to the use of deleterious 
means to indicate upon the surface of an instru- 
ment the ravages of time. He faithfully copied 
the form, and thus did what Lupot was doing 
at the same period. The finish of these instru- 
ments is excellent, and as they are covered with 
a good quality of varnish, they have every recom- 
mendation of appearance. 



3i6 THE VIOLIN 

HARRIS, Charles. Son of the above. Neat 
workmanship. Well-cut scroll. Sound-holes not 
well formed. Yellow varnish. Worked for a short 
time for John Hart. 

HART, Jofrn Thomas, born December 17, 1805, 
died January i, 1874. He was articled to Samuel 

Gilkes in May, 1820, 

John Hart, , , . 

Maker, * whom he learned 

14, Princes Street, Leicester Square, the mechanical 

London. Anno 18 _ 

branch of his pro- 
fession. -He afterwards centred his attention upon 
the peculiar characteristics of the Cremonese and 
Italian Violin-makers generally, and in a com- 
paratively brief space of time obtained an extensive 
acquaintance in that direction. His unerring eye 
and powerful memory of instruments once brought 
under his notice secured for him the highest 
position among the connoisseurs of his time. 
Commencing business at a period when the desire 
to possess instruments by the famous Italian makers 
was becoming general among amateurs, and being 
peculiarly fortunate in securing an early reputa- 
tion as a judge of them, he became the channel 
through which the greater part of the rare Italian 
works passed into England, and it has frequently 
been said that there are very few distinguished 
instruments in Europe with which he was un- 
acquainted. Among the remarkable collections 
that he brought together may be mentioned that 
of the late Mr. James Coding, the remnant of 




> 





ENGLISH MAKERS 317 

which was dispersed by Messrs. Christie and 
Manson in 1857 ; the small but exquisite collection 
of Mr. Charles Plowden, consisting of four Violins 
of Stradivari and four of Guarneri, with other 
instruments of less merit, the whole of which again 
passed into Mr. Hart's possession upon the death 
of their owner ; and, lastly, a large portion of the 
well-known collection of the late Mr. Joseph Gillot, 
sold by Christie and Manson shortly after the 
famous sale of pictures belonging to the same 
collector. 

HAYNES, Jacob, London, 1746. Copied Stainer. 
The style resembles that of Barrett. 

HEESOM, Edward, London, 1748. Copied 
Stainer. 

HILL, Joseph, London, 1715-84. Pupil of Peter 
Wamsley. His Violoncellos and Tenors are well- 
made instruments. 

Joseph Hill, Maker, 

at the Harp and Flute, 

in the Hay Market. 

London. 

HILL, William, London, 1741. Son of the 
above. Very good work. 

William Hill, Maker, in Poland Street, 
) near Broad Street, 17 

HILL, Joseph, London, 1800-40. Son of the 
above. 

HILL, Lockey, London, 1800-35. Brother of 
the above. Made many excellent instruments. 



3i8 THE VIOLIN 

HILL, William Ebsworth, London, 1817-95. 
Son of Lockey Hill. Made several instruments 
in his younger days, but, like the rest of our 
English makers, he long since discovered that 
new work was unremunerative, and turned his 
attention to repairing and dealing in old instru- 
ments, and became the founder of the well-known 
firm of W. E. Hill and Sons, of Bond Street. He 
exhibited at the Exhibition of 1862 a Violin and 
Tenor, thus showing that Violin-making was not 
quite extinguished in England. 

HOLLO WAY, J., London, 1794. 

HUME, Richard, Edinburgh, i6th century. 
A maker of Lutes, &c. 

JAY, Henry, London, i7th century. Maker 
of Viols, which are capital specimens of the work 
of the period. The varnish is excellent. 

JAY, Thomas, London. Related to the above. 
Excellent work. 

JAY, Henry, London, about 1744-77. A 

maker of Kits chiefly. 



juvenile Violins were 
in much demand by dancing-masters. A few 
years ago a very choice collection of these 
instruments was made by an Irish gentleman 
residing at Paris, who obtained specimens from 
all parts of Europe. Henry Jay also made 
Violoncellos, some of which have the names of 
Longman and Broderip on the back. 



ENGLISH MAKERS 319 

JOHNSON, John, London, 1750. The Violins 
bearing his label are dated from Cheapside. 

Johnson was a music 

Made and sold by John Johnson, an( J musical instru- 
at the Harp and Crown, in Cheapside, ., _ __. 

17 London. 53 ment seller. In The 

Professional Life of 

Dibdin," written by himself, we have the following 
reference to this City music-seller : " My brother 
introduced me to old Johnson, who at that time 
kept a capital music-shop in Cheapside. 1 I soon, 
however, grew tired of an attendance on him. He 
set me down to tune Harpsichords, a mere 
mechanical employment, not at all to my taste." 
" I saw plainly that I might have screwed up 
Harpsichords in old Johnson's shop to all eternity, 
without advancing my fortune ; and as to the songs 
and sonatas that I brought him for sale, they had 
not been performed at the theatres nor Vauxhall, 
nor any other place, and Johnson would not print 
them." "The Thompsons, however, of St. Paul's 
Churchyard, published six ballads for me, which 
sold at three-halfpence a-piece, and for the copy- 
right of which they generously gave me three 
guineas." Though we may not feel disposed to 
apply the term "generous" to a payment of half-a- 

1 Dibdin's brother was captain of a merchant vessel, and 
was intimate with Johnson the music-seller. On the death 
of Captain Dibdin his brother composed " Tom Bowling," 
the music and words of which bespeak the fraternal love 
of the composer. 



320 THE VIOLIN 

guinea for a Dibdin ballad, yet in all probability 
we are indebted to the Thompsons for this 
particular recognition of merit. Happily true 
genius, when in straits, generally finds relief. 
Were it otherwise, and had the Thompsons been 
as deaf to Dibdin as John Johnson appears to have 
been, "Tom Bowling," "Poor Jack," and many 
other compositions of sterling merit, might never 
have been written. 1 

KENNEDY, Alexander, London, 1700-86. 
Was a native of Scotland. He was the first 
maker of Violins in his family, which was con- 
nected with the manufacture for nearly two 
centuries. 

Alexander Kennedy, Musical Instrument 

Maker, living in Market Street, in Oxford 

Road, London, 17 

KENNEDY, John, London, born 1730; died 1816. 
Nephew of Alexander Kennedy. Made Violins 
and Tenors. 

KENNEDY, Thomas, London, born 1784; died 
about 1870. Son of the above. Probably made 
more instruments than any English maker, with 
the exception of Crask. 

LENTZ, Johann Nicolaus, London, 1803. He 

1 Dibdin was evidently discouraged in consequence of 
Johnson's refusal to publish his songs : he says, " After I had 
broken off with Johnson, I had some idea of turning my 
thoughts to merchants' accounts the very last thing upon 
earth for which I was calculated." 



ENGLISH MAKERS 321 

used mostly one kind of wood, viz., close-grained 
maple. Varnish nearly opaque. 

Johann Nicolaus Lentz, fecit 
near the Church, Chelsea. 1803. 

LEWIS, Edward, London, 1700. The work is 
well executed throughout, and the varnish superior. 

LISTER, George, i8th century. 

LONGMAN AND BRODERIP, Cheapside, London, 
about 1760. They were music-publishers and 
instrument-sellers, and were not Violin-makers. 
Benjamin Banks, Jay, and others, made many 
of the instruments upon which the name of Long- 
man is stamped. Muzio Clementi was at one 
time a partner in the firm. The business ultimately 
passed to Collard and Collard. 

LOTT, John Frederick, 1775-1853. Was a 
German by birth. He was engaged in the cabinet 
business early in life. He was induced by Fendt 
to turn his attention to making Violins, and ulti- 
mately obtained employment under Thomas Dodd, 
making many of the Violoncellos and Double- 
Basses that carry the label of Dodd within them. 
His work was of a most finished description. His 
Double- Basses are splendid instruments, and will 
bear comparison with Italian work. His varnish 
was far from equal to his finish. The time he 
spent in making these instruments was double that 
which any other English maker expended over 
similar work. There is not a single portion of any 

Y 



322 THE VIOLIN 

of his Double- Basses that has been carelessly 
made ; the interior is as beautifully finished as the 
exterior. The machines on many of his Basses 
were made by himself a very unusual circumstance. 
The scrolls are finely cut. He was certainly the 
king of the English Double- Bass makers. 

LOTT, George Frederick, London, born 1800; 
died 1868. Son of the above. Many years 
with Davis, of Coventry Street. Was an excel- 
lent judge of Italian instruments, and a clever 
imitator. 

LOTT, John Frederick, London, younger brother 
of the above, died about 1871. Was articled to 
Davis. Has made many clever imitations. He 
was also an ardent lover of Cremonese instruments, 
and thoroughly understood their characteristics. His 
career was both chequered and curious, sufficiently 
so, indeed, to cause our eminent novelist, Charles 
Reade, to make it the subject of " Jack of all 
Trades : a Matter-of-Fact Romance." Jack Lott 
(as he was familiarly styled) therefore shares with 
Jacob Stainer the honour of having supplied sub- 
ject-matter for writers of fiction. It must, however, 
be said that whilst Dr. Schuler's "Jacob Stainer" is 
mainly pure fiction, " Jack of all Trades " is rightly 
entitled " a matter-of-fact romance." I have many 
times heard John Lott relate the chief incidents so 
graphically described by Charles Reade. 

MACINTOSH, Dublin. Succeeded Perry and Wil- 
kinson. Died about 1840. 



ENGLISH MAKERS 323 

MARSHALL, John, London, 1750. 

MARTIN, , London, about 1790. 

MAYSON, Walter H., Manchester, 1835-1904. A 
prolific maker. His later work is highly spoken of. 
MEARES, Richard, about 1677. Maker of Viols. 

Richard Meares, without Bishopsgate, 
near to Sir Paul Finder's, London. Fecit 1677. 

MIER, , London, about 1786. 

MORRISON, John, London, about 1780-1803. 
NAYLOR, Isaac, Headingly, near Leeds, about 
1778-92. 

NICHOLS, Edward, i8th century. 

Edwardus Nichols, 
Fecit ad exemplar Antoni Straduarii Cremonensis, 1763. 

NORBORN, John, London, about 1723. 

NORMAN, Barak, London, 1688-1740. The 

instruments of this maker are among the best of 

the Old English school. His instructor in the art 

of Viol and Violin-making is unknown, but judging 

from the character of 

%4 his work it is very 

^^d " probable he learned 

Nathaniel Cross, from Thomas Urqu- 

at the Bass Viol in St. fa Thjs . . 

Paul s Church Yard, 

London. Fecit 172 is strengthened upon 

examining his earliest 

instruments. We there find the same peculiarities 
which mark the individuality of Urquhart. Later 
in life he leaned much to the model of Maggini. 



3 2 4 THE VIOLIN 

During his early years he was much esteemed as 
a maker of Viols, many of which have all the marks 
of careful work upon them. On all of these instru- 
ments will be found his name, surrounded with a 
design in purrling, under the finger-board, or his 
monogram executed in purfling. The same trade 
token will be found in his Violoncellos. All en- 
deavours to discover any existing English Violon- 
cello, or record of one, anterior to Barak Norman, 
have failed, and, consequently, it may be assumed 
that he was the first maker of that instrument in 
England. Here, again, is evidence of his par- 
tiality for the form of Maggini, as he copied this 
maker in nearly all his Violoncellos. All the 
Violoncellos of Barak Norman have bellies of 
good quality ; the modelling is executed skilfully, 
due care having been observed in leaving sufficient 
wood. His Tenors are fine instruments. Many of 
these were made years before he began the Violon- 
cellos a fact which satisfactorily accounts for the 
marked difference in form peculiar to them. The 
build is higher, and the sound-hole German in 
character ; the varnish is very dark. About the 
year 1715 Barak Norman entered into partnership 
with Nathaniel Cross, carrying on the joint business 
at the sign of the Bass Viol, St. Paul's Churchyard. 
In a Viol da Gamba which belonged to Walter 
Brooksbank, Esq., of Windermere, is a label in the 
handwriting of Nathaniel Cross, in which he adds 
the power of speech to the qualities of the quaint 



ENGLISH MAKERS 325 

Gamba ; the words are, " Nathaniel Cross wrought 
my back and belly," the sides and scroll being the 
work of his partner. 

NORRIS, John, London, born 1739; died 1818. 

Articled to Thomas 

Made by Norris and Barnes, Smith, the Successor 

Violin, Violoncello, and Bow f p Wamslev 
Makers, To their Majesties, 

Coventry Street, London. Similar work tO that 

of Thomas Smith. 
He became a partner of Robert Barnes. 

PAMPHILON, Edward, London, i7th century. The 
Violins of this maker were formerly much prized. 

The model is very 

Edward Pamphilon, i r j ,1 

April the 3 rd, 1685. hl g h ' and the appear- 

ance somewhat gro- 
tesque. It is to be regretted that the splendid 
varnish often found on these instruments was not 
put upon better work. 

PANORMO, Vincent. (See Italian School.) 

PANORMO, Joseph, London. Son of Vincent 
Panormo. His work was excellent. His Violon- 
cellos are decidedly superior to his Violins. 

PANORMO, George Lewis, London. Brother of 
the above. Made Violins of the Stradivari pattern. 

PANORMO, Louis, London. Made Guitars chiefly. 

PARKER, Daniel, London, i8th century. This is 
another maker of the English school, who was 
possessed of exceptional talent, and whose instru- 
ments are well worthy of attention from those in 
search of good Violins at a moderate cost. To 



326 THE VIOLIN 

Parker belongs, in conjunction with Benjamin 
Banks, the merit of breaking through the prejudice 
so long in favour of preference for the Stainer model. 

The dates of his instruments extend from the 
year 1740 to 1785. He left his Violins thick in 
wood, which has certainly enhanced their value now 
that time has ripened them. He used excellent 
material, which is often very handsome. The 
varnish is of a mellow quality, and fairly trans- 
parent. A large number of these Violins have 
been passing under other makers' names, and have 
been but little noticed. 

PEARCE, James, London, i8th century. 

PEARCE, W., London, contemporary. 

PEMBERTON, Edward, London, 1660. This 
maker has been often mentioned as the author 
of a Violin said to have been presented to the Earl 
of Leicester by Queen Elizabeth, and to suit this 
legend Pemberton's era has been put back a century. 
The date given above will be found in the Violins 
of this maker. 

PERRY AND WILKINSON, Dublin, 17 to 1830. 
The instruments bearing the labels of these makers 
are frequently excellent in tone, material, and finish. 

POWELL, London, i8th century. 

Made by Thomas 

Powell, No. 18, Clemens 

Lane, Clare Market. 



PRESTON, London, about 1724. Appears to have 



ENGLISH MAKERS 327 

used his trade label in the instruments he sold, 
made by makers he employed. 

PRESTON, John, York, i8th century. 

John Preston, York, 
1791. Fecit. 

RAWLINS, Henry, London, about 1781. He ap- 
pears to have been patronised by Giardini, the 

Restauratus Henricus Rawlins 

Auspicio Giardini 

Londini 1781. 

Violinist, according to the label here given. Giar- 
dini held the post of leader at the Italian Opera at 
this period. 

RAYMAN, Jacob, London, i7th century. The 

subject of this notice 

Jacob Rayman dwelling in Black- was probably a 
man Street, Long Southwark. 

1641. German, from the 

Tyrol, who settled 

in England about 1620, and may be considered 
as the founder of Violin-making in this country, 
there being no trace of any British Violin-maker 

previous to that time. 

Jacob Rayman, at ye Bell His work is quite 

Yard in Southwark, 

London, 1648. different from that 

of the old English 

Viol-makers. The instruments of Rayman are of 
a somewhat rough exterior, but full of character. 
The form is flat, considering the general style of 



328 THE VIOLIN 

the work. The sound-holes are striking, although 
not graceful in any way. The scroll is diminutive, 
but well cut. The varnish is very fine. In the 
catalogue of the effects of Tom Britton, mention is 
made of "an extraordinary Rayman." 

RICHARDS, Edwin, London, contemporary. Maker 
and repairer. 

ROOK, Joseph, Carlisle, about 1800. 

ROSSE (or Ross), John, Bridewell, London, about 
1562. Made Viols and Bandoras. 

Ross, John, London, about 1596. Son of the 
above. Maker of Viols. The varnish is excellent 
in quality. 

SHAW, London, 1655. Viol maker. 

SIMPSON, London, 1785. 

John Simpson, 
Musical Instrument Maker, 
At the Bass Viol and Flute, 

In Sweeting's Alley, 

Opposite the East door of the Royal Exchange, 
London. 

SMITH, Henry, London, 1629. Maker of Viols. 
SMITH, Thomas, London. Pupil of Peter Wams- 
ley, and his successor at the Harp and Hautboy. 

Made by Thos. Smith, at the Harp and 
Hautboy, in Pickadilly, London. 1756. 

SMITH, William, London, about 1770. 
TARR, William, Manchester. Made many 
Double- Basses from about 1829. 



ENGLISH MAKERS 329 

TAYLOR, London, about 1800. A maker of 
much merit. Instruments of the character of 
Panormo. 

THOMPSON, London, 1749. 

THOROWGOOD, Henry, London. Little known. 

TILLEY, Thomas, London, about 1774. 

TOBIN, Richard, London, 1800. Pupil of Perry, 
of Dublin. His instruments are much appreciated 
by the best judges. In cutting a scroll he was 
unequalled amongst English makers. 

TOBIN, London. Son of the above. 

URQUHART, London, i7th century. Nothing is 
known concerning the history of this excellent 
maker. The style may be considered as resem- 
bling that of Jacob Rayman, and it is possible he 
worked with him. His varnish is equal to that on 
many Italian instruments. 

VALENTINE, William, London, died about 1877. 
Made many Double-Basses for Mr) Hart, which 
are highly valued. 

WAMSLEY, Peter, London, i8th century. One of 
the best English makers. His copies of Stainer 
are very superior. 

Made by Peter Wamsley, 

At ye Golden Harp, in Piccadilly, 

London. 17 

WISE, Christopher, London, about 1650. Yellow 
varnish, neat workmanship, flat model, small pattern. 

WITHERS, Edward, Coventry Street. Succeeded 
William Davis. 



330 THE VIOLIN 

WITHERS, Edward. Son of the above. War- 
dour Street, Soho. Was instructed by John Lott. 

YOUNG, London, about 1728. Lived in St. 
Paul's Churchyard. Purcell has immortalised 
father and son in the first volume of his Catches. 

" You scrapers who want a good Fiddle well strung, 
You must go to the man that is old while he's Young ; 
But if this same Fiddle you fain would play bold, 
You must go to his son, who'll be Young when he's old. 
There's old Young and young Young, both men of renown, 
Old sells, and young plays, the best Fiddles in town ; 
Young and old live together, and may they live long, 
Young, to play an old Fiddle ; old, to sell a new song." 



SECTION XIII 
The Violin and its Votaries 

OTERNE (himself a votary of the Fiddle) has 
^} well said, " Have not the wisest of men 
in all ages, not excepting Solomon himself, had 
their hobby-horses their running-horses, their 
coins and their cockle-shells, their drums and 
their trumpets, their Fiddles, their pallets, their 
maggots and their butterflies ? And so long as 
a man rides his hobby-horse peaceably and quietly 
along the king's highway, and neither compels you 
nor me to get up behind him, pray, sir, what 
have either you or I to do with it ? " He further 
tell us, " There is no disputing against hobby- 
horses ; " and adds, " I seldom do : nor could I, 
with any sort of grace, had I been an enemy to 
them at the bottom ; happening at certain intervals 
and changes of the moon, to be both Fiddler 
and painter." 

The leading instrument is singularly favoured. 
It may be said to have a double existence. In 
addition to its manifold capabilities, it has its life 



331 



332 THE VIOLIN 

of activity on the one hand, and inactivity on the 
other. At one time it is cherished for its powers 
of giving pleasure to the ear, at another for the 
gratification it affords to the eye. Sometimes it 
is happily called upon to perform its double part 
giving delight to both senses. When this is so, 
its existence is indeed a happy one. The Violin 
thus occupies a different position from all other 
musical instruments. Far more than any other 
musical instrument it enters into the life of the 
player. It may almost be said to live and move 
about with him ; the treasure-house of his tenderest 
and deepest emotions, the symbol of his own better 
self. Moreover, the Violin is a curiosity as well 
as a mechanical contrivance. Thus it is cherished^ 
perhaps for its old associations it may have been 
the companion of a valued friend, or it may be 
prized as a piece of artistic work, .or it may be 
valued, independently of other associations, for 
the simple purpose for which it was made, viz., 
to answer the will of the player when touched with 
the bow. The singular powers centred in the 
Violin have been beautifully expressed by Oliver 
Wendell Holmes, who says : " Violins, too. The 
sweet old Amati ! the divine Stradivari ! played 
on by ancient maestros until the bow hand lost 
its power, and the flying ringers stiffened. Be- 
queathed to the passionate- young enthusiast, who 
made it whisper his hidden love, and cry his 
inarticulate longings, and scream his untold agonies, 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 333 

and wail his monotonous despair. Passed from 
his dying hand to the cold virtuoso, who let it 
slumber in its case for a generation, till, when 
his hoard was broken up, it came forth once more, 
and rode the stormy symphonies of royal orches- 
tras, beneath the rushing bow of their lord and 
leader. Into lonely prisons with improvident 
artistes ; into convents from which arose, day 
and night, the holy hymns with which its tones 
were blended ; and back again to orgies, in which 
it learned to howl and laugh as if a legion of 
devils were shut up in it ; then, again, to the gentle 
dilettante, who calmed it down with easy melodies 
until it answered him softly as in the days of 
the old maestros ; and so given into our hands, 
its pores all full of music, stained, like the meer- 
schaum, through and through with the concentrated 
hue and sweetness of all the harmonies which have 
kindled and faded on its strings." The gifted 
author of " The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table " 
has evidently made himself acquainted with the 
various life-phases of a Violin. 

The fancy for the Violin as a curiosity has been 
a matter of slow growth, and has reached its 
present proportions solely from the intrinsic merits 
of its object. The Violin has not come suddenly 
to occupy the attention of the curious, like many 
things that might be named, which have served 
to satisfy a taste for the collection of what is rare 
or whimsical, and to which an artificial value has 



334 THE VIOLIN 

been imparted. In those days when the old 
Brescian and Cremonese makers flourished, the 
only consideration was the tone-producing quality 
of their instruments ; the Violin had not then 
taken its place among curiosities. The instruments 
possessing the desired qualities were sought out 
until their scarcity made them legitimate food for 
the curious. Beauties, hitherto passed over, began 
to be appreciated, the various artistic points 
throughout the work of each valued maker were 
noted, and in due time Violins had their con- 
noisseurs as well as their players. 

Besides Italy, England, France, and Germany 
have had their great men in the Fiddle world, 
whose instruments have ever been classed as 
objects of virtu. Mace, in his " Mustek's Monu- 
ment," published in 1676, gives, perhaps, the earliest 
instance of curiosity prices in England. " Your 
best provision (and most compleat) will be a good 
chest of Viols ; six in number, viz., two Basses, 
two Tenors, and two Trebles, all truly and propor- 
tionally suited ; of such there are no better in 
the world than those of Aldred, Jay, Smith ; (yet 
the highest in esteem are) Bolles and Ross (one Bass 
of Bolles I have known valued at ^100). These 
were old." From the above curious extract we 
glean that the Fiddle family was receiving some 
attention. The makers in England whose instru- 
ments seem to have reached curiosity prices are 
Bolles, Jay, Barak Norman, Duke, Wamsley, 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 335 

Banks, and Forster : the value attached at different 
periods to the works of these men has' nearly 
approached the prices of Cremonese work. Of 
course, the high value set upon the instruments of 
the makers above named was confined to England. 

Turning to France, we find that many of the 
old French makers' instruments brought prices 
greatly in excess of their original cost. The 
favourite French makers were Me"dard, Boquay, 
Pierray, of the old school, and Lupot and Pique 
of the modern. 

In Germany there have been makers whose 
works have brought very high prices. Stainer, 
Albani, Widhalm, Scheinlein, are names that will 
serve to associate high values with German work. 
In the case of Jacob Stainer, the celebrity of his 
instruments was not confined to Germany ; they 
were highly prized by the English and French, 
and at one period were more valued than the 
best Amatis. It was not until the vast superiority 
of Italian Violins over all others was thoroughly 
recognised, that the love of the instrument as a 
curiosity reached its present climax. In Italy, the 
value set upon the chief Cremonese works, though 
great, was comparatively insignificant, as far as 
the Italians themselves are concerned, and when 
France and England came into competition with 
them for the possession of their Violins by Amati, 
Stradivari, Guarneri, and the gems of other 
makers, they at once yielded the contest. 



336 THE VIOLIN 

The introduction of Italian instruments into 
Great Britain was a matter of slow growth, and 
did not assume any proportions worthy of notice 
until the commencement of the present century, 
when London and Paris became the chief marts 
from whence the rare works of the old Italians 
were distributed over Europe. By this time the 
taste of the Fiddle world had undergone a con- 
siderable change. The instruments in use among 
the dilettanti in France and England had hitherto 
been those built on the German model of the 
school of Jacob Stainer. The great German maker 
was copied with but little intermission for up- 
wards of a century, dating from about 1700 to 
1800, a period of such considerable extent as to 
evidence the popularity of the model. Among 
the Germans who were following in the footsteps 
of Stainer were the family of Kloz, Widhalm, 
Statelmann, and others of less repute. In England 
there was quite an army of Stainer-worshippers. 
There were Peter Wamsley, Barrett, Benjamin 
Banks, the Forsters, Richard Duke, and a whole 
host of little men. Among the makers mentioned 
there are three, viz., Banks, Forster, and Richard 
Duke, who did not copy Stainer steadfastly. Their 
early instruments are of the German form, but 
later they made many copies of the Cremonese. 
To Benjamin Banks we are indebted for having 
led the English makers to adopt the pattern of 
Amati. He had long laboured to popularise the 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 337 

school which he so much loved, but met with 
little encouragement in the beginning, so strong 
was the prejudice in favour of the high model. 
However, he triumphed in the end, and completely 
revolutionised the taste in England, till our Fiddle- 
fanciers became total ab-Stazners ! Then com- 
menced the taste for instruments of flat form. 
Where were they to be found ? If the few by the 
early English makers be excepted, there were none 
but those of the Italians to be had, and perhaps 
a few old French specimens. Attention was thus 
directed to the works of the Cremonese, and the 
year 1800 or thereabouts may be put down as the 
time when the tide of Italian Violins had fairly 
set in towards France and England. The instru- 
ments by the Amati were those chiefly sought 
after ; the amount of attention they commanded 
at this period was probably about equal to that 
bestowed upon the works of Stradivari and Guarneri 
at the present time. Violins of Amati and other 
makers were, up to this time, obtainable at nominal 
prices. The number in Italy was far in excess 
of her requirements, the demand made upon them 
for choir purposes in former days had ceased, and 
the number of Violins was thus quite out of pro- 
portion to the players. The value of an Amati in 
England in 1799 and 1804 mav De gathered from 
the following extracts from the day-book of the 
second William Forster, who was a dealer as well 
as maker " 2oth April, 1799. A Violoncello by 



338 THE VIOLIN 

Nicholas Amati, with case and bow, ^17 173. od. ; " 
and further on "5th July, 1804, an Amati Violin 
31 i os. od." These prices were probably less 
than those which William Forster received for 
many instruments of his own make. It is certain 
that these low prices did not long continue ; the 
price increased in due proportion to the vanishing 
properties of the supply. The call for Violins by 
the Amati was so clamorous as speedily to effect 
this result ; the prices for them were doubled, 
trebled, and often quadrupled, until they no longer 
found a home in their native land. The value 
set on them by the French and English so far 
exceeded that which the Italians themselves could 
afford, even though inclined to indulge in such 
things, that the sellers were as eager to sell as 
the buyers to buy. During the time of this 
scramble for instruments of Cremona, the theory 
of the flat model was fast gaining ground. The 
circulation of the works of Cremona among the 
players of France and England led to a com- 
parison of the various forms, and it was found that 
the elevated model was inferior in every way when 
tested by the works of the great Italian makers. 
Hitherto no distinction had been drawn as regards 
value among the productions of the several 
members of the Amati family. Andrea had been 
looked upon as equivalent to Girolamo, Antonio, 
or Niccolo ; but attention now began to be directed 
towards the works of the brothers, and to those 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 339 

of Niccolo in particular, as the flat model gained 
in the appreciation of the Fiddling world. Grand 
Amatis became the coveted Fiddles ; they were 
put up frequently at twice the value of the smaller 
patterns a position they still maintain. The taste 
for the flat form having thus been developed, the 
works of Antonio Stradivari came to the front, 
slowly but surely ; their beauties now became 
known outside the circle in which they had hitherto 
been moving : a circle made up chiefly of royal 
orchestras (where they were used at wide intervals), 
convent choirs, and private holders, who possessed 
them without being in the least aware of their 
merits. They were now eagerly sought by 
soloists in all parts of Europe, who spread their 
fame far and wide. Their exquisite form and 
finish captivating the dilettanti, the demand in- 
creased to an extent far beyond that commanded 
by the works of the Amati at the height of their 
popularity. 

There were a few Stradivari instruments in 
England when Amati was the favourite maker, 
and their value at that period may be estimated, 
if it be true that Cervetto, the father of the 
famous Violoncellist, was unable to dispose of a 
Stradivari Violoncello for five pounds a circum- 
stance which shows how blind our forefathers were 
to the merits of the greatest maker the world 
has had. Among the artists of the early part of 
the present century who used the instruments of 



340 THE VIOLIN 

Stradivari were Boccherini, Viotti, Rode, Kreutzer, 
Habeneck, Mazas, Lafont, and Baillot. 

About the year 1820 the fame of Giuseppe 
Guarneri as a great maker was published beyond 
Italy, chiefly through the instrumentality of Paga- 
nini. That wonderful player came to possess a 
splendid specimen of Guarneri del Gesii, dated 
1743, now sleeping in the Museum at Genoa, 
which Paganini used in his tour through France 
and England. He became the owner of this world- 
famed Violin in the following curious manner. 
A French merchant (M. Livron) lent him the in- 
strument to play upon at a concert at Leghorn. 
When the concert had concluded, Paganini brought 
it back to its owner, when M. Livron exclaimed, 
" Never will I profane strings which your fingers 
have touched ; that instrument is yours." A more 
fitting present or higher compliment could not 
have been offered. The names of Amati and 
Stradivari became familiar to the musical world 
gradually, but Guarneri, in the hands of a Paganini, 
came forth at a bound. This illustrious Violin was 
often credited with the charm which belonged to the 
performer ; the magical effects and sublime strains 
that he drew forth from it must, it was thought, 
rest in the Violin. Every would-be Violinist, 
whose means permitted him to indulge in the 
luxury, endeavoured to secure an instrument by 
the great Guarneri. The demand thus raised 
brought forth those gems of the Violin-maker's 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 341 

art, now in the possession of wealthy amateurs and 
a few professors. When the various works of 
the gifted Guarneri were brought to light, much 
surprise was felt that such treasures should have 
been known to such a handful of obscure players, 
chiefly in the churches of Italy. The Violin used 
by Paganini belongs to the last period of the 
great maker, and consequently, is one of those 
bold and massive instruments of his grandest 
conception, but lacks the beautiful finish of the 
middle period. The connoisseurs of those days 
had associated Giuseppe Guarneri with Violins of 
the type of Paganini's only ; their surprise was 
great when it was discovered that there were 
three distinct styles in the works of Guarneri, one 
evidencing an artistic grandeur, together with a 
high finish, but little inferior to those of Antonio 
Stradivari. The marked difference between these 
epochs of Guarneri's manufacture has led to a 
great amount of misconception. Fifty years since, 
the world possessed little information on the subject, 
and the connoisseur of those times could not believe 
it possible that these varied styles emanated from 
one mind. The opportunities given to the con- 
noisseur of later days of comparing the various 
instruments of the several epochs of Guarneri 
have set at rest all doubts concerning them. They 
no longer require dates or labels ; they are as 
easily distinguished and classed as the works of 
Amati or Stradivari. 



342 THE VIOLIN 

Attention was claimed for the works of Maggini 
by the charming Belgian Violinist, Charles de 
Beriot, who, early admiring the large proportions 
and powerful tone of Maggini's instruments, decided 
to use one for public playing. That an artist so 
refined as De Beriot, and one who attached so 
much importance to that sympathy between the 
Violin and player which should make it the vehicle 
for presenting its master's inward feelings, should 
have selected a Violin of large size, and adapted 
for giving forth a great volume of tone, was a 
matter of surprise to a great many of his contem- 
poraries. Those who judged only from his school 
of playing anticipated that he would have selected 
Amati as embodying the qualities he so passion- 
ately admired. It is certain, however, that he 
succeeded in bringing the penetrating power of his 
Maggini thoroughly under his control. In the 
instruments of Maggini, De Beriot doubtless recog- 
nised the presence of vast power, together with no 
inconsiderable amount of purity of tone, and to 
bring forth these qualities to the best advantage 
was with him a labour of love. The popularity of 
Maggini's Violins rapidly raised their value. 
Instruments that, before De Be" riot made them 
widely known, might have been purchased for ten 
pounds, realised one hundred. The Violin known 
as " De Beriot's Maggini " remained in his 
possession till within a short time of his death, 
when it was disposed} of to his friend and patron, 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 343 

the Prince de Chimay, it is said, for the enormous 
sum of six hundred pounds a price far in excess 
of the average value of Maggini's instruments. In 
this instance, the association of De Be"riot with 
the instrument is sufficient, perhaps, to account for 
the rare price set upon it. 

We now reach the time when Carlo Bergonzi 
began to be regarded as a maker of the first class. 
As a Cremonese maker, he was one of the latest 
to receive the attention to which his exceptional 
merits fairly entitled him. To English connoisseurs 
belongs the credit of appreciating this great maker. 

The recognised merits of the makers already 
named naturally caused a demand for Italian instru- 
ments generally. If the masters could not be had, 
the pupils must be found ; hence a whole host of 
Italian makers, quite unknown in England fifty 
years since, became familiar to the connoisseur. 
The works of Guadagnini, Gagliano, Grancino, Santo 
Serafino, Montagnana, and others whose names it 
is unnecessary to give, passed from Italy into 
France and England, until the various schools of 
Italian Violin manufacture were completely ex- 
hausted. When we look back, it is surprising that 
so much has been achieved in such a brief space of 
time. The knowledge of Italian works in 1800 
was of the slenderest kind-, both in France and 
England ; in less than three-quarters of a century 
those countries contrived to possess themselves of 
the finest specimens of Cremonese instruments, 



344 THE VIOLIN 

together with those of other Italian schools. We 
here have an example of the energy and skill that 
is brought to bear upon particular branches of in- 
dustry when once a demand sets in. Men of enter- 
prise rise with it unnoticed, and lead the way to the 
desired end. In the case of Italian Violins it was 
Luigi Tarisio who acted as pioneer a being of 
singular habits, whose position in the history of the 
Violin, considered as a curiosity, is an important 
one. This remarkable man was born of humble 
parents, wholly unconnected with the musical art. 
In due time he chose the trade of a carpenter, 
which vocation he followed with assiduity, if not 
with love. He amused himself during his leisure 
hours in acquiring a knowledge of playing on the 
Violin an accomplishment that was destined to 
exercise an influence on his future life, far greater 
than was ever contemplated by the young car- 
penter. That his playing was not of a high order 
may be readily imagined : it was confined chiefly 
to dance-music, with which he amused his friends, 
Fiddling to their dancing. His first Violin was a 
very common instrument, but it served to engender 
within him that which afterwards became the ruling 
passion of his life. His study of this little instru- 
ment was the seed from which grew his vast 
knowledge of Italian works. So much was his 
attention absorbed by the form of the instrument 
that any skill in playing ' upon it became quite a 
secondary consideration. He endeavoured to see 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 345 

all the Violins within his reach, and to observe their 
several points of difference. The passion for old 
Violins, thus awakened, caused him to relinquish 
his former employment entirely, and to devote the 
whole of his attention to the art which he so loved. 
He soon became aware of the growing demand for 
Italian works, and felt that, possessed with a varied 
and proficient knowledge of the different styles of 
workmanship belonging to the Italian schools of 
Violin-making, he could turn his present acquire- 
ments to a profitable as well as pleasurable use. 
He resolved to journey in search of hidden 
Cremonas. His means were, indeed, very limited. 
His stock-in-trade consisted only of a few old 
Violins of no particular value. With these he 
commenced his labours, journeying in the garb of a 
pedlar, on foot, through Italian cities and villages, 
and often playing his Violin in order to procure the 
bare means of existence. Upon entering a village 
he endeavoured to ingratiate himself with the 
villagers, arid thus obtain information of the 
whereabouts of any inhabitants who were possessed 
of any member of the Fiddle family, his object 
being to examine and secure, if possible, such 
instruments as were possessed of any merit. It can 
readily be conceived that at the commencement 
of the present century, numbers of valuable 
Cremonese and other instruments were in the hands 
of very humble people. Luigi Tarisio knew that 
such must be the case, and made the most of his 



346 THE VIOLIN 

good fortune in being the first connoisseur to visit 
them. His usual method of trading was to ex- 
change with the simple-minded villagers, giving 
them a Violin in perfect playing order for their 
shabby old instrument that lacked all the ac- 
cessories. It was indeed the case of Aladdin's 
Lamp, and as potent were these Fiddles as the 
wonderful lamp or ring itself. In the possession of 
Luigi Tarisio they drew forth from the purses of 
the wealthy gold that would have enabled the 
humble villagers to have ceased labour. It is an 
axiom, however, that everything on this earth is 
only of value providing it is in its proper place, 
and these rare old instruments, in the keeping of 
the poor peasants, could scarcely be considered to 
be in their proper element ; their ignorant posses- 
sors were alike unable to appreciate their sterling 
worth, as works of art, or their powers of sound. 
Luigi Tarisio, after gathering together a number 
of old rarities, made for his home, and busied 
himself in examining the qualities of his stock, 
selecting the best works, which he laid aside. With 
the residuum of those instruments he would again 
set out, using them as his capital wherewith to 
form the basis of future transactions among the 
peasantry and others. He visited the numerous 
monasteries throughout Italy that he might see the 
valuable specimens belonging to the chapel orches- 
tras. He found them often in a condition ill 
becoming their value, and tendered his services to 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 347 

regulate and put them into decent order services 
gladly accepted and faithfully performed by the 
ardent connoisseur. By the handling of these 
buried treasures, his knowledge and experience 
were greatly extended. Makers hitherto unknown 
to him became familiar. When he met with instru- 
ments apparently beyond the repairer's skill, he 
would make tempting offers of purchase, which were 
often accepted. Having accumulated many instru- 
ments of a high order during these journeys, he 
began to consider the best means of disposing of 
them. He decided upon visiting Paris. He took 
with him the Violins he valued least, resolving to 
make himself acquainted with the Parisian Fiddle 
market before bringing forth his treasures. It is 
said that he undertook his journey on foot, depriving 
himself often of the common necessaries of life, that 
he might have more money to buy up his country's 
Fiddles. His first visit to Paris was in 1827, an 
eventful year in the history of Italian Violins, as 
far as relates to Paris. Upon arriving in the 
French capital, he directed his steps to the nearest 
luthier, one Aldric, to whom he had been recom- 
mended as a purchaser of old instruments of high 
value. Upon arriving at the shop of M. Aldric, 
Tarisio hesitated before entering, feeling suddenly 
that his appearance was scarcely in keeping with 
his wares, his clothes being of the shabbiest descrip- 
tion, his boots nearly soleless, and his complexion, 
naturally inclined to blackness, further darkened 



348 THE VIOLIN 

by the need of ordinary ablutions. However, he 
set aside these thoughts, and introduced himself to 
the luthier as having some Cremona Violins for 
sale. Aldric regarded him half-contemptuously, and 
with a silent intent to convey to Tarisio that he 
heard what he said, but did not believe it. The 
Italian, to the astonishment of the luthier, was not 
long in verifying his statement ; he opened his 
bag and brought forth a beautiful Niccolo Amati, 
of the small pattern, in fine preservation, but having 
neither finger-board, strings, nor fittings of any 
kind. The countenance of the luthier brightened 
when he beheld this unexpected specimen of the 
Italian's wares. He carefully examined it, and did 
his best to disguise the pleasurable feelings he 
experienced. He demanded the price. The value 
set on it was far in excess of that he had antici- 
pated ; he erroneously arrived at the probable cost 
from an estimate of the shabby appearance of the 
man. He had been comforting himself that the 
Italian was unaware of the value put upon such in- 
struments. He decided to see further the contents 
of the bag before expressing an opinion as to the 
price demanded for the Amati. Violins by Maggini, 
Ruggeri, and others, were produced six in number. 
Tarisio was asked to name his price for the six. 
After much giving and taking they became the 
property of the luthier. This business was not 
regarded as satisfactory by Tarisio ; he had over- 
estimated the value of his goods in the Paris 






GASPARO DA SALO. 
(LATE LORD AMHERST OF HACKNEY.) 



Plate 20. 



GIUSEPPE GUAKXEKI DEL GESU. 

1735- 
(PRINCE FREDERICK WILLIAM OF PRUSSIA.) 

[To face p. 348- 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 349 

market ; he had not learned that it was he himself 
who was. to create the demand for high-class Italian 
instruments by spreading them far and wide, so 
that their incomparable qualities might be observed. 
He returned to Italy with his ardour somewhat 
cooled ; the ready sale at the prices he had put 
upon his stock was not likely to be realised, he 
began to think. However, with the proceeds of 
his Paris transaction he again started in search of 
more Cremonas, with about the same satisfactory 
results. He resolved to visit Paris again, taking 
with him some of his choicest specimens. He 
reached the French capital with a splendid collection 
one that in these days would create a complete 
furore throughout the world of Fiddles. He ex- 
tended his acquaintance with the Parisian luthiers, 
among whom were MM. Vuillaume, Thibout, and 
Chanot senior. They were all delighted with the 
gems that Tarisio had brought, and encouraged him 
to bring to France as many more as he could 
procure, and at regular intervals. He did so, and 
obtained at each visit better prices. 

This remarkable man may be said to have 
lived for nought else but his Fiddles. Mr. Charles 
Reade, who knew him well, says : I " The man's 
whole soul was in Fiddles. He was a great 
dealer, but a greater amateur ; he had gems by 
him no money would buy from him." It is related 
of him that he was in Paris upon one occasion, 
1 " Cremona Violins," Pall Mall Gazette, August, 1872. 



350 THE VIOLIN 

walking along the Boulevards with a friend, when 
a handsome equipage belonging to a French 
magnate passed, the beauty of which was the 
talk of the city. Tarisio's attention being directed 
to it by his friend, he calmly answered him that 
"he would sooner possess one 'Stradivari' than 
twenty such equipages" There is a very charac- 
teristic anecdote of Tarisio, which is also related 
by Mr. Reade in his article on Cremona Violins, 
entitled the "Romance of Fiddle-dealing": 

"Well, one day Georges Chanot, senior, made 
an excursion to Spain, to see if he could find 
anything there. He found mighty little, but 
coming to the shop of a Fiddle-maker, one Ortega, 
he saw the belly of an old Bass hung up with 
other things. Chanot rubbed his eyes, and asked 
himself was he dreaming? the belly of a Stradi- 
vari Bass roasting in a shop window ! He went 
in, and very soon bought it for about forty francs. 
He then ascertained that the Bass belonged to 
a lady of rank. The belly was full of cracks ; 
so, not to make two bites of a cherry, Ortega 
had made a nice new one. Chanot carried this 
precious fragment home and hung it up in his 
shop, but not in the window, for he was too 
good a judge not to know that the sun will take 
all the colour out of that maker's varnish. Tarisio 
came in from Italy, and his eye lighted instantly 
on the Stradivari belly. He pestered Chanot 
till the latter sold it him for a thousand francs, 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 351 

and told him where the rest was. Tarisio no 
sooner knew this than he flew to Madrid. He 
learned from Ortega where the lady lived, and 
called on her to see it. 'Sir,' says the lady, 
'it is at your disposition.' That does not mean 
much in Spain. When he offered to buy it, she 
coquetted with him, said it had been long in her 
family ; money could not replace a thing of that 
kind, and, in short, she put on the screw, as she 
thought, and sold it him for about four thousand 
francs. What he did with the Ortega belly is 
not known ; perhaps sold it to some person in 
the toothpick trade. He sailed exultant for Paris 
with the Spanish Bass in a case. He never let 
it go out of his sight. The pair were caught 
by a storm in the Bay of Biscay; the ship rolled; 
Tarisio clasped his Bass tightly and trembled. 
It was a terrible gale, and for one whole day 
they were in real danger. Tarisio spoke of it 
to me with a shudder. I will give you his real 
words, for they struck me at the time, and I 
have often thought of them since. ' Ah, my 
poor Mr. Reade, the Bass of Spain was all but 
lost ! ' 

" Was not this a true connoisseur a genuine 
enthusiast? Observe, there was also an ephemeral 
insect called Luigi Tarisio, who would have gone 
down with the Bass ; but that made no impression 
on his mind. De minimis non curat Ludovicus / 

" He got it safe to Paris. A certain high-priest 



352 THE VIOLIN 

in these mysteries, called Vuillaume, with the 
help of a sacred vessel, Called the glue-pot, soon 
re-wedded the back and sides to the belly, and 
the Bass now is just what it was when the ruffian 
Ortega put his finger in the pie. It was sold 
for 20,000 fr. (^800). I saw the Spanish Bass 
in Paris twenty-five years ago, and you can see 
it any day this month you like, for it is the 
identical Violoncello now on show at Kensington 
numbered 188. Who would divine its separate 
adventures, to see it all reposing so calm and 
uniform in that case? Post tot naufragia tutus." 

The love of Tarisio for the masterpieces of the 
great makers was so intense, that often when 
he had parted with the works he so admired, 
he never lost sight of them, and waited a 
favourable opportunity for again making himself 
their owner. 

It is related of him that upon one occasion he 
disposed of a beautiful Stradivari, in perfect preser- 
vation, to a Paris dealer. After having done so 
he hungered for it again. For years he never 
visited Paris without inquiring after his old 
favourite, and the possibility of its again being 
offered for sale, that he might regain possession 
of it. At last his perseverance was rewarded, 
inasmuch as he heard that it was to be bought. 
He instructed his informant to obtain for him a 
sight of it. The instrument was fetched, and 
Tarisio had scarcely patience enough to wait 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 353 

the opening of the case, so anxious was he to 
see his old companion. He eagerly took up the 
Violin, and turned it over and over, apparently 
lost to all about him, when suddenly his keen 
eye rested upon a damage it had received, which 
was hidden by new varnish. His heart sank 
within him ; he was overcome by this piece of 
vandalism. In mingled words of passion and 
remorse he gave vent to his feelings. He placed 
it in its case, remarking sadly that it had no 
longer any charm for him. 

In the year 1851 Tarisio visited England, when 
Mr. John Hart, being anxious that he should 
see the chief collections of Cremonese instruments 
in this country, accompanied him to the collection, 
amongst others, of the late >Mr. James Coding, 
which was then the finest in Europe. The instru- 
ments were arranged on shelves at the end of a 
long room, and far removed from them sat the 
genuine enthusiast, patiently awaiting the promised 
exhibition. Upon Mr. Coding taking out his 
treasures he was inexpressibly astonished to hear 
his visitor calling out the maker of each instrument 
before he had had time to advance two paces 
towards him, at the same time giving his host 
to understand that he thoroughly knew the instru- 
ments, the greater number having been in his 
possession. Mr. Coding whispered to a friend 
standing by, " Why, the man must certainly smell 
them, he has not had time to look." Many instru- 

AA 



354 THE VIOLIN 

ments in this collection Tarisio seemed never 
tired of admiring. He took them up again and 
again, completely lost to all around in a word, 
spell-bound. There was the " King " Guarneri 
the Guarneri known as Lafont's the beautiful 
Bergonzi Violin the Viola known as Lord Mac- 
donald's General Kidd's Stradivari Violoncello 
the Marquis de la Rosa's Amati Ole Bull's 
Guarneri the Santo Serafino 'Cello and other 
remarkable instruments too numerous to mention. 
Who can say what old associations these Cremona 
gems brought to his memory? For the moment, 
these Fiddles resolved themselves into a diorama, 
in which he saw the chief events of his life played 
over again. With far greater truthfulness than 
that which his unaided memory could have sup- 
plied, each Fiddle had its tale to relate. His 
thoughts were carried back to the successful 
energies of his past. 

Tarisio may be said to have lived the life of 
a hermit to the time of his death. He had no 
pleasures apart from his Fiddles ; they were his 
all in this world. Into his lodgings, in the Via 
Legnano, near the Porta Tenaglia, in Milan, no 
living being but himself was ever permitted to 
enter. 1 His nearest neighbours had not the least 

1 The house is now turned, with those adjoining, into 
a manufactory. When Luigi Tarisio lived there it was a 
small restaurant, similar to those seen in the side streets of 
Soho. 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 355 

knowledge of his occupation. He mounted to his 
attic without exchanging a word with any one, 
and left it securely fastened to start on his journeys 
in the same taciturn manner. He was consequently 
regarded as a mysterious individual, whose doings 
were unfathomable. The time, however, has arrived 
when the veil hiding the inner life of this remark- 
able man should be lifted, and here I am indebted 
for particulars to Signor Sacchi, of Cremona, who 
received them from a reliable source. Tarisio had 
been seen by his ever-watchful neighbours to enter 
his abode, but none had noticed him quit it for 
several days. The door was tried and found 
locked ; no answer was returned to the sundry 
knockings. That Tarisio was there the neighbours 
were convinced. The facts were at once brought 
under the notice of the municipal authorities, who 
gave instructions that an entry should be made 
by force into the mysterious man's apartment. 
The scene witnessed was indeed a painful one. On 
a miserable couch rested the lifeless body of Luigi 
Tarisio ; around, everything was in the utmost 
disorder. The furniture of the apartment consisted 
mainly of a chair, table, and the couch upon which 
lay the corpse. A pile of old Fiddle-boxes here 
and there, Fiddles hung around the walls, others 
dangling from the ceiling, Fiddle-backs, Fiddle- 
heads, and bellies in pigeon-holes ; three Double- 
Basses tied to the wall, covered with sacking. This 
was the sight that met the gaze of the authorities. 



356 THE VIOLIN 

Little did they imagine they were surrounded with 
gems no money would have bought from their 
late eccentric owner. Here were some half-dozen 
Stradivari Violins, Tenors, and Violoncellos, the 
chamber Gasparo da Salo Double-Bass now in 
the possession of Mr. Bennett, and the Ruggeri 
now belonging to Mr. J. R. Bridson, besides up- 
wards of one hundred Italian instruments of 
various makers, and others of different nation- 
alities. All these were passed over by the visitors 
as so much rubbish in their search for something 
more marketable. At last they alighted on a packet 
of valuable securities together with a considerable 
amount of gold. A seal was placed upon the apart- 
ment, pending inquiries as to the whereabouts of 
the dead man's relatives. In due time, some 
nephews came forth and laid claim to the goods 
and chattels of the Italian Fiddle connoisseur. 

Luigi Tarisio died in October, 1854. Three 
months later, upon the news being communicated 
to M. Vuillaume, of Paris, he soon set out for 
Milan, and had the good fortune to secure the 
whole of the collection, at a price which left him 
a handsome profit upon the transaction, besides 
the pleasurable feeling of becoming the possessor 
of such a varied and remarkable number of instru- 
ments. 

Having given the reader all the information I 
have been able to collect concerning Tarisio, I 
will only add that he had advantages over all other 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 357 

connoisseurs, inasmuch as he found the instruments 
mostly in their primitive condition, and free from 
any tampering as regards the labels within them. 
He was thus enabled to learn the characteristics 
of each without fear of confusion. The days of 
taking out the labels of unmarketable names and 
substituting marketable counterfeits had not arrived. 
The principal buyers of Italian instruments on 
the Continent, when dealing in this class of property 
was in its infancy, were Aldric, MM. Chanot senior, 
Thibout, Gand, Vuillaume of Paris, and Vuillaume 
of Brussels. In London, among others, were 
Davis, Betts, Corsby, and John Hart. There 
is yet another, the omission of whose name would 
be a blemish in any notice of the Violin and its 
connoisseurs. I refer to Mr. Charles Reade, the 
novelist, who in early life took the highest interest 
in old Italian Violins. We are indebted to him 
in a great measure for bringing into this country 
many of the most beautiful specimens we possess. 
Impressed with the charms of the subject, he visited 
the Continent for the pleasure it afforded him of 
bringing together choice specimens, and thus opened 
up the intercourse between England and the Con- 
tinent for the interchange of old Violins which 
continues to this day. It would be difficult to 
find an instance where the intricacies of the subject 
were so quickly mastered as in" his case. Without 
assistance, but solely from his own observation, 
he gained a knowledge which enabled him to place 

O O 1 



358 THE VIOLIN 

himself beside the Chief Continental connoisseurs, 
and compete for the ownership of Cremonese master- 
pieces. These were the men who laid bare the 
treasures of Cremona's workshops, and spread far 
and wide love and admiration for the fine old 
works. Connoisseurship such as theirs is rare. 
To a keen eye was united intense love of the 
art, patience, energy, and memory of no ordinary 
kind, all of them attributes requisite to make a 
successful judge of Violins. 

Charles Lamb, on being asked how he dis- 
tinguished his " ragged veterans " in their tattered 
and unlettered bindings, answered, " How does 
a shepherd know his sheep?" It has been 
observed that, " Touch becomes infinitely more 
exquisite in men whose employment requires them 
to examine the polish of bodies than it is in others. 
In music only the simplest and plainest compositions 
are relished at first ; use and practice extend our 
pleasure teach us to relish finer melody, and by 
degrees enable us to enter into the intricate and 
compounded pleasure of harmony." Thus it is 
with connoisseurship in Violins. Custom and 
observation, springing from a natural disposition, 
make prominent features and minute points of 
difference before unseen, resulting in a knowledge 
of style of which it has been well said " Every man 
has his own, like his own nose." 

As an ardent votary of the Violin, regarded from 
a point of view at once artistic and curious, Count 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 359 

Cozio di Salabue takes precedence of all others. 
He was born about the time when the art of Italian 
Violin-making began to show signs of decadence, 
and having cultivated a taste for Cremonese in- 
struments, he resolved to gratify his passion by 
bringing together a collection of Violins which 
should be representative of the work and character 
of each maker, and serve as models to those seeking 
to tread the path of the makers who made Cremona 
eminent as a seat of Violin manufacture. Virtuosity 
emanating from a spirit of beneficence is somewhat 
rare. When, however, utility occupies a prominent 
place in the thoughts of the virtuoso, he becomes 
a benefactor. The virtuosity of Count Cozio was 
of this character. His love for Cremonese instru- 
ments was neither whimsical nor transient. From 
the time when he secured the contents of the shop 
of Stradivari to the end of his life a period of 
about fifty years he appears to have exerted 
himself to obtain as much information as possible 
relative to the art, and to collect masterpieces that 
they might in some measure be the means of re- 
covering a lost art. When in the year 1775 he 
secured ten instruments out of ninety-one which 
Stradivari left in his shop at the time of his death, 
he must surely have considered himself singularly 
fortunate, and the happiest of collectors. 1 That 

1 These instruments and the tools appear to have been in 
the possession of Paolo from the year 1743, when Francesco 
died, and Paolo opened the shop in the Piazza S. Domenico 



360 THE VIOLIN 

such good fortune prompted him to make fresh 
overtures of purchase cannot be wondered at. We 
learn from the correspondence of Paolo Stradivari 
that the Count had caused two letters to be sent 
by the firm of Anselmi di Briata to Paolo inquiring 
if he was willing to part with the tools and patterns 
used by his father Antonio, and that Paolo replied 
on May 4, 1776: "I have already told you 
that I have no objection to sell all those patterns, 
measures, and tools which I happen to have in 
my possession, provided that they do not remain 
in Cremona, and you will recollect that I have 
shown you all the tools I have, and also the box 
containing the patterns. ... I place all at your 
disposal, and as it is simply a friendly matter " 
(Paolo Stradivari appears to have had large dealings 
in cloth and other goods with the firm of Anselmi 
di Briata, of Casale, a small city on the P6), " I 
will give you everything for twenty-eight giliati." 1 
It does not appear that Paolo's correspondents were 
moved in their answer by any feelings of sentimen- 
tality or of friendship : on the contrary, the tone 

as a cloth warehouse. He therefore seems to have only 
decided to dispose of his father's tools when he was in 
a feeble state of health, he having died, as already noticed, 
before the purchase was settled, aged 68. 

1 A giliati was a Tuscan gold coin bearing the arms of 
Florence, the value of which was 95. 6d. Its present 
purchasing power would probably be three times as much, 
and therefore the sum asked by Paolo Stradivari would 
be equal 10.^38 ias. 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 361 

of the letter was clearly commercial, they having 
made an offer of twenty-three giliati less than 
demanded. Paolo Stradivari in his reply, dated 
June 4, 1776, says: "Putting ceremony aside, 
I write in a mercantile style. I see from your 
favour of the I3th ultimo (which I only received 
by the last courier), that you offer me five giliati 
for all the patterns and moulds which I happen 
to possess, as well as for those lent to Bergonzi, 
and also for the tools of the trade of my late father ; 
but this is too little ; however, to show you the 
desire I have to please you, and in order that 
not a single thing belonging to my father be left 
in Cremona, I will part with them for six giliati, 
providing that you pay them at once into the hands 
of Domenico Dupuy & Sons, silk stocking manu- 
facturers. I will send you the things above-men- 
tioned, conditionally that I keep the five giliati 
and use the other one to defray expenses for the 
case, the packing, and the custom-house duty, 
which will be necessary to send them, and I shall 
let you have back through Messrs. Dupuy, residing 
under the Market Arcades in Turin, any balance 
that should remain, or (if you like) you may pay 
the said Messrs. Dupuy seven giliati, and I shall 
then defray all the expenses, and send also the 
two snake-wood bows which I possess. (Signed) 
PAOLO STRADIVARI." 

In reply to this interesting letter, Messrs. 
Anselmi di Briata appear to have written ac- 



362 THE VIOLIN 

cepting the terms offered by Paolo Stradivari, 
and to have explained to him that they had 
been in treaty with a certain Signor Boroni, 
relative to the purchase of a Violin, and having 
come to terms they wished the instrument to 
be packed with the tools and moulds. Paolo, 
in acknowledging this communication, June 25, 
1776, says : " In reply to your favour of the 
loth instant, Signor Boroni will hand me over 
the Violin upon hearing that the money has been 
paid to Messrs. Dupuy. I shall then have no 
objection to place it in the same case together 
with the patterns and implements left by my 
father." From this and subsequent correspond- 
ence we learn that Messrs. Anselmi di Briata, 
being wholesale traders, were in a suitable 
position to act as intermediaries in the purchase 
of Violins on behalf of Count Cozio. Their 
business necessitated their visiting Cremona, and 
thus they appear to have seen the Violin of 
Signor Boroni, and also another belonging to 
a monk or friar named Father Ravizza, both 
of which were subsequently bought, as seen by 
the following extracts from a letter of Paolo 
Stradivari : 

" Cremona, July 10, 1776. We learn from Messrs. 
Dupuy of the receipt of the seven giliati, which 
you have paid on our account. . . . As we have" 
already prepared 'everything, we shall therefore 
inform Father Ravizza and Signor Boroni ; I 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 363 

have, however, to mention that I did not think 
I possessed so many things as I have found. It 
being according to what has been promised, it 
cannot be discussed over again. ... It will be 
a very heavy case, on account of the quantity 
of patterns and tools, and consequently it will 
be dangerous to put the Violins in the same 
package." The writer refers to the two instru- 
.ments before mentioned : " I fear without care 
they will let it fall in unloading it, and the 
Violins will be damaged ; I inform you therefore 
of the fact. . . . You must let me know how 
I have to send the case. If by land, through 
the firm of Tabarini, of Piacenza, or to take 
the opportunity of sending by the P6." In 
passing, it may be remarked that the distance 
between Cremona and Casale by the river P6 
is about sixty miles. The later correspondence 
makes known the fact of the precious freight 
having been consigned to the firm of Anselmi 
di Briata by way of the P6, and that it was 
entrusted to the care and charge of a barge- 
master named Gobbi. 

It is by no means uncommon to discover the 
memories of men kept green in our minds from 
causes strangely curious and unexpected. Many 
seek to render their names immortal by some 
act the nature of which would seem to be im- 
perishable, and chiefly fail of their object ; whilst 
others, obscure and unthought of, live on by 



364 THE VIOLIN 

accident. Imagine the paints and brushes, the 
pencils and palettes, the easel and the sketches 
of Raffaele having been given over to a P6 
barge-master, and that chance had divulged his 
name. Would he not in these days of microscopic 
biography have furnished work for the genealogist, 
and been made the subject of numberless pictures ? 
Hence it is that the admirers of Stradivari cannot 
fail to remember the name of honest Gobbi, who 
carried the chest wherein were the tools with 
which the Raffaele of Violin-making wrought the 
instruments which have served to render his 
memory immortal. 

Soon after the date of Paolo's last letter, he 
became seriously ill, dying on the 9th of October, 
1776. The correspondence was then taken up 
by his son Antonio. He says in his letter dated 
November 21, 1776: "I shall send you the case 
with the patterns and tools of my late grandfather 
Antonio, which was packed and closed before 
my father was bedridden. You will find it well- 
arranged, with mark on it, and with red tape 
and seal as on the Violins already sent to you." 
He next refers to other patterns which he found 
locked up in a chest and which he believes 
were unknown or forgotten by his father, and 
offers to dispose of them, with a Viola, and 
concludes by promising to send the receipts, the 
copies of which show that the remnants of the 
tools and patterns were bought for three giliati. 



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THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 365 

It is unnecessary in this place to make further 
reference to Count Cozio as a collector, the 
chief information concerning him being spread 
over the section of Italian makers. The fac- 
simile of one -of the Count's letters here given 
will serve both as an interesting remembrance 
of him and as evidence of his keen interest 
in all relating to the art of which he was so 
distinguished a votary. 

Probably the earliest collector of Italian Violins 
in England was William Corbett. He was a 
member of the King's orchestra, and having 
obtained permission to go abroad, went to Italy 
in 1710, and resided at Rome many years, where 
he is said to have made a rare collection of 
music and musical instruments. How he managed 
to gratify his desire in this direction seems not 
to have been understood by his friends, his 
means, in their estimation, not being equal 
to such an expenditure. Hence arose a report 
that he was employed by the Government 
to watch the Pretender. Corbett died at an 
advanced age in 1748, and bequeathed his 
"Gallery of Cremonys and Stainers" to the 
authorities of Gresham College, with a view that 
they should remain for inspection under certain 
conditions, leaving ten pounds per annum to an 
attendant to show the instruments. Whether the 
wishes of the testator were carried out in any 
way there is no information, but the instruments 



366 THE VIOLIN 

are said to have been disposed of by auction a 
short time after his decease. 

The principal early collectors in this country 
were the Duke of Hamilton, the Duke of 
Cambridge, the Earl of Falmouth, the Duke 
of Marlborough, Lord Macdonald, and a few 
others. Later, Mr. Andrew Fountaine, of Narford 
Hall, Norfolk, became the owner of several fine 
Italian instruments, and made himself better ac- 
quainted with the subject, perhaps, than any 
amateur of his time. Among the Stradivari 
Violins which Mr. Fountaine possessed was that 
which he purchased from M. Habeneck, the 
famous professor at the Paris Conservatoire in 
the early part of the nineteenth century. Another 
very fine specimen of the late period, 1734, was 
also owned by him, a Violin of grand proportions 
in a high state of preservation, and of the richest 
varnish. The Guarneri Violins that he possessed 
were of a very high class. Among these may 
be mentioned a very small Violin by Giuseppe 
Guarneri, probably unique, which instrument was 
exhibited among the Cremonese Violins at the 
South Kensington Museum in 1872, together with 
another of the same size by Stradivari, and a 
third by the brothers Amati. 

The number of rarities brought together by 
the late Mr. James Goding was in every respect 
remarkable. At one period he owned twelve 
Stradivari Violins, and nearly the same number 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 367 

by Giuseppe Guarneri, all high-class instruments. 
It would take up too much time and space to 
name the particular instruments which were 
comprised in this collection. The remnant of 
this group of Crefnonese Fiddles was dispersed 
by Messrs. Christie and Manson in 1857. Mr. 
Plowden's collection was another remarkable one, 
consisting of eight instruments of the highest 
class. 

The late Joseph Gillott was a collector, who, 
in point of number, exceeded all others. He 
did not confine himself solely to the works of 
the greatest makers, but added specimens of 
every age and clime; and at one time he must 
have had upwards of 500 instruments, the chief 
part of which belonged to the Italian School. 
When it is remembered that the vast multitude 
of stringed instruments disposed of by Messrs. 
Christie and Manson in 1872 did not amount 
to one-half the number originally owned by 
Mr. Gillott, some idea of the extent of his 
collection may be gained. Among the many 
curious instances of the love of collecting Violins, 
which sometimes possesses those unable to use 
them, perhaps that of Mr. Gillott is the most 
singular. 

Notable collections, be they of Fiddles, medals, 
pottery, or pictures, have sometimes had their rise 
in accidents of a curious kind. Lord Northwick 
dated his passion for coins to a bag of brass ones, 



368 THE VIOLIN 

which he purchased in sport for eight pounds. His 
lordship ended by purchasing, in conjunction with 
Payne Knight, the collection of Sir Robert Ainslie, 
for eight thousand pounds, besides sharing with the 
same collector the famous Sicilian coins belonging to 
the Prince Torremuzza. The Gillott collection of 
Fiddles had its origin in a picture deal. Mr. Gillott 
happened to be making terms in his gallery at 
Edgbaston relative to an exchange of pictures with 
Edwin Atherstone, 1 poet and novelist, who collected 
both Violins and pictures. A difficulty arose in 
adjusting the balance, when Mr. Atherstone 
suggested throwing a Fiddle in as a counterpoise. 
"That would be to no purpose," remarked Mr. 
Gillott, " for I have neither knowledge of music nor 
of the Fiddle." " I am aware of that," rejoined his 
friend ; " but Violins are often of extraordinary value 
as works of art." Mr. Gillott, becoming interested 
in the subject, agreed to accept the Fiddle as a 
make-weight, and the business was settled. A few 
months later the floor of his picture gallery on all 
sides was lined with cases, single and double, con- 
taining Violins in seemingly endless profusion. It 
was about the year 1848 he conceived the notion of 
bringing together this mammoth collection ; and in 

1 Edwin Atherstone, born 1788, died 1872 ; was the author 
of " The Fan of Nineveh " and " The Last Days of Hercu- 
laneum," two poems in blank verse, and of a novel, " The 
Sea Kings of England," of which Sir Walter Scott wrote 
approvingly. 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 369 

about four years he had made himself master of the 
largest number of Italian instruments ever owned 
by a single individual. He suddenly relinquished 
the pursuit he had followed with such persistency ; 
he disposed of a great number, and laid the re- 
mainder aside in his steel-pen works at Birming- 
ham, where they slumbered for upwards of twenty 
years. The time at last arrived when this pile of 
Fiddles was to be dispersed. It fell to my lot to 
classify them, and never shall I forget the scene I 
witnessed. Here, amid the din of countless machines 
busy shaping magnum-bonums, swan-bills, and divers 
other writing implements, I was about to feast my 
eyes on some of the choicest works of the old 
Italian Fiddle-makers. Passing through offices, 
warehouses, and workshops, I found myself at a 
door which my conductor set himself to unlock an 
act not often performed, I felt assured, from the 
sound which accompanied his deed. To adequately 
describe what met my eyes when the door swung 
back on its hinges, is beyond my powers of de- 
scription. Fiddles here ! Fiddles there ! Fiddles 
everywhere, in wild disorder ! I interrogated my 
friend as to the cause of their being in such an 
unseemly condition, and received answer that he 
had instructions to remove most of the instruments 
from their cases and arrange them, that I might 
better judge of their merits. I was at a loss to under- 
stand what he meant by arranging, for a more 
complete disarrangement could not have been 

BB 



370 THE VIOLIN 

effected. Not wishing to appear unmindful of the 
kindly intentions of my would-be assistant, I 
thanked him, inwardly wishing that this dis- 
entombment had been left entirely to me. The 
scene was altogether so peculiar and unexpected as 
to be quite bewildering. In the centre of the room 
was a large warehouse table, upon which were 
placed in pyramids upwards of seventy Violins and 
Tenors, stringless, bridgeless, unglued, and enve- 
loped in the fine dust which had crept through the 
crevices of the cardboard sarcophagi in which they 
had rested for the previous quarter of a century. 
On the floor lay the bows. The scene might not 
inappropriately be compared to a post-mortem 
examination on an extended scale. When left 
alone I began to collect my thoughts as to the best 
mode of conducting my inquiry. After due con- 
sideration I attacked pyramid No. i, from which I 
saw a head protruding which augured well for the 
body, and led me to think it belonged to the higher 
walks of Fiddle-life. With considerate care I with- 
drew it from the heap, and gently rubbed the dust off 
here and theTre, that I might judge of its breeding. 
It needed but little rubbing to make known its 
character ; it was a Viola by Giuseppe Guarneri, 
filius Andrese, a charming specimen (now in the 
ownership of the Earl of Harrington). Laying it 
aside, I pulled out from the pile several others be- 
longing to the same class. Being too eager to learn 
of what the real merits of this huge pile of Fiddles 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 371 

consisted, I rapidly passed from one to the other 
without close scrutiny, leaving that for an after 
pleasure. So entirely fresh were these instruments 
to me, that the delight I experienced in thus digging 
them out may well be understood by the connoisseur. 
After thus wading through those resting on the 
table, I discovered some shelves, upon which were 
a number of cases, which I opened. Here were 
fine Cremonese instruments in company with raw 
copies as curious a mixture of good and indifferent 
as could be well conceived. Not observing any 
Violoncellos, when my attendant presented himself 
I inquired if there were not some in the collection. 
I was unable to make him understand to what I 
referred for some little time, but when I called them 
big Fiddles, he readily understood. He had some 
faint idea of having seen something of the kind on 
the premises, and started off to make inquiry. 
Upon his return, I was conducted to an under 
warehouse, the contents of which were of a varied 
character. Here were stored unused lathes, statuary, 
antique pianos, parts of machinery, pictures, and 
picture-frames. At the end of this long room stood, 
in stately form, the "big Fiddles," about fifty in 
number five rows, consequently ten deep. They 
looked in their cases like a detachment of infantry 
awaiting the word of command. Years had passed 
by since they had been called upon to take active 
service of a pacific and humanising nature in the 
ranks of the orchestra. Had they the power of 



372 THE VIOLIN 

speech, what tales of heroism might they have 
furnished of the part they played at the " Fall of 
Babylon" and the "Siege of Corinth," aye! 
and "Wellington's Victory " (Beethoven, Op. 91). 
A more curious mixture of art and mechanism could 
not easily be found than that which the contents 
of this room exhibited. With what delight did 
I proceed to open these long-closed cases ! The 
character of the Violins naturally led me to antici- 
pate much artistic worth in the Violoncellos, and 
I had not judged erroneously. Bergonzi, Amati, 
Andrea Guarneri, Cappa, Grancino, Testore, 
Landolfi, and men of less note, were all well 
represented in this army of big Fiddles. Having 
glanced at the merits and demerits of these instru- 
ments, I observed to my conductor that I imagined 
I had seen all. " No," he answered ; " I was about 
to mention that there are a few Violins at Mr. 
Gillott's residence, and perhaps we had better go 
there at once." I readily assented, and in due time 
reached Edgbaston. There seemed no doubt as to 
the whereabouts of these instruments, and I was at 
once ushered into the late Mr. Gillott's bedroom. 
Pointing to a long mahogany glazed case occupying 
one side of the chamber, the attendant gave me to 
understand I should there find the Violins. At 
once I commenced operations. Pushing aside the 
first sliding door, I saw a row of those cardboard 
cases made to hold the Violin only, which many of 
my readers will doubtless remember seeing at the 



THE VIOLIN AND ITS VOTARIES 373 

time of the sale at Messrs. Christie's. By this time 
it may readily be imagined that an idea had taken 
possession of my mind, that I had not, after all, 
seen the best portion of the collection. The circum- 
stance of Violins being deposited in the sleeping 
apartment of their owner was sufficient to give birth 
to this conjecture. Upon removing the lid of the 
first cardboard case, my eyes rested on a charming 
Stradivari of the Amati period, a gem of its kind. 
Gently laying it on the table, that I might examine 
it later, I opened the next case. Here rested a 
magnificent Giuseppe Guarneri, the instrument 
afterwards bought by Lord Dunmore. date 1732. 
Pursuing my delightful occupation, I opened another 
case, the contents of which put the rest completely 
in the shade here rested the Stradivari, date 1715, 
the gem of the collection. Unable to restrain my 
curiosity, I rapidly opened sixteen cases in all, from 
which I took out six Stradivari, two Guarneri, one 
Bergonzi, two Amati, and five other Violins of a 
high class. 

It was observed at the time of the sale of this 
remarkable collection, which took place shortly after 
the dispersion of Mr. Gillott's gallery of pictures, 
that " Every well-ordered display of fireworks 
should have its climax of luminous and detonating 
splendour, throwing into shade all the preliminary 
squibs, crackers, and rockets, the Catherine wheels, 
the Roman candles, and the golden rain. The 
French, with modest propriety, term this consum- 



374 E VIOLIN 

mation a bouquet," I cannot find anything more 
applicable than this word to the scene I have 
attempted to describe. It only remains for me to 
say, in reference to this array of Fiddles, that I 
passed a week in their company, and a more enjoy- 
able one I have never had during my professional 
career. 

Dr. Johnson, who understood neither Fiddling 
nor painting, who collected neither coins nor 
cockle-shells, maggots nor butterflies, was clearly 
of the same opinion as the author of "Tristram 
Shandy," that there is no disputing against hobby- 
horses. He says : " The pride or the pleasure of 
making collections, if it be restrained by prudence 
and morality, produces a pleasing remission after 
more laborious studies ; furnishes an amusement, 
not wholly unprofitable, for that part of life, the 
greater part of many lives, which would otherwise 
be lost in idleness or vice ; it produces a useful 
traffic between the industry of indigence and the 
curiosity of wealth, and brings many things to 
notice that would be neglected." 



SECTION XIV 
Sketch of the Progress of the Violin 

IT may be said that the Violin made its 
appearance about the middle of the sixteenth 
century. There are instances where reference is 
made to Violins and Violin-playing in connection 
with times prior to that above-named, but no reli- 
ance can be placed on the statements. Leonardo 
da Vinci, who died in 1523, is spoken of as having 
been a celebrated performer on the Violin. The 
instrument he used is described as having had a 
neck of silver, with the singular addition of a 
carved horse's head. 1 This description, however, 
is sufficiently anomalous to make one rather 
sceptical, as to whether the instrument denoted 
possessed any particular affinity to the present 
Violin. Reference is made to the picture of the 
" Marriage at Cana," by Paolo Veronese, as fur- 
nishing evidence of the form of instruments used 
in Italy in the i6th century, and a description 

1 " Lives of Haydn and Mozart," translated from the 
French by L. A. C. Bombet. 1818. 

375 



376 



THE VIOLIN 



is given of the musical part of the subject as 
follows : "In the foreground, in the vacant space 
of the semicircle formed by the table, at which 
the guests of the marriage at Cana are seated, 
Titian is playing on the Double- Bass, Paolo 
Veronese and Tintoretto on the Violoncello ; a 




man with a cross on his breast is playing on 
the Violin, Bassano is blowing the Flute, and a 
Turkish slave the Sackbut." 

The naming of the performers is presumably 
correct, and greatly heightens our interest in the 
group musically. It is clear, however, that the 
nomenclature of the instruments is erroneous. In 
the engraved section of the famous picture here 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 377 

given, Paolo Veronese is represented taking part 
in the performance of a Madrigal, wearing an 
expression of countenance indicative of rapt 
pleasure, engendered by the mingling of the tones 
of his Tenor Viol in the harmonies. Behind 
Paolo Veronese is seated Tintoretto, playing an 
instrument identical with that in the hands of 
the painter of the picture. On the opposite side 
of the table is Titian, with the point of his bow 
almost touching the dog, playing the fundamental 
tones on the Violono. He apparently displays an 
amount of real relish for his task, which bespeaks 
a knowledge of the responsibility belonging to 
the post of Basso. The ecclesiastic seated next 
to Titian, wearing the chain with crucifix, is per- 
forming on a Soprano Viol. The instruments, in 
short, are Italian Viols, the Tenors of which 
were strung with six strings, and the Violono, or 
Bass, with six -or seven. It is this order of 
Viols to which reference is made in the work 
of Ganassi del Fontego, and they are, therefore, 
distinct from the four-stringed Viols made at 
Brescia and Mantua. 

The earliest player on the Violin of whom we 
have any account worthy of attention was Balta- 
zarini, a native of Piedmont. He removed to 
France in the year 1577, whither he was sent by 
Marshal de Brissac to superintend the music of 
Catherine de Medici. He was probably the intro- 
ducer of Italian dances into Paris, and he delighted 



378 THE VIOLIN 

the Court as much by his skill on the Violin as 
by his writing of ballet music. 

During the last half of the sixteenth century 
a new species of music made way in Italy which 
exercised a marked effect on the progress of the 
Violin, namely, that of the concert orchestra. It 
was chiefly cultivated at Venice and Ferrara. At 
the latter place the Duke of Ferrara maintained 
a great number of musicians in his service. At 
this period there were no concerts of a public 
character ; they were given in the palaces of the 
wealthy, and the performers were chiefly those 
belonging to their private bands. 

The opera, in which instruments were used to 
accompany the voice, began to be put upon the 
stage of the public theatres in Italy about the 
year 1600. The opera " Orfeo," by Claudio 
Monteverde, a Cremonese, famous both as a com- 
poser and Violist, was represented in 1608. The 
opera in those times differed essentially from that 
of modern days. Particular instruments were 
selected to accompany each character; for instance, 
ten Treble Viols to accompany Eurydice, two 
Bass Viols to Orpheus, and so on. No mention 
is made of Violins further than that two small 
Violins (duoi Violini piccoli alia Francese) are 
to accompany the character of Hope, from which 
it is inferred that a band of Violins was in use 
not much later. 

It is to the introduction of the Sonata that 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 379 

the rapid progress in the cultivation of Violin- 
playing is due. Dr. Burney tells us the earliest 
Sonatas or Trios for two Violins and a Bass he 
discovered were published by Francesco Turini, 
organist of the Duomo, at Brescia, under the 
following title : " Madrigali a una, due, e tre vocii 
con alcune Senate a due e a tre, Venezia, 1624." 
He says: "I was instigated by this early date to 
score one of these Sonatas, which consisted of only 
a single movement in figure and imitation through- 
out, in which so little use was made of the power 
of the bow in varying the expression of the same 
notes, that each part might have been as well 
played on one instrument as another." 

In this branch of composition Corelli shone 
forth with considerable lustre, and gave great 
impetus to the culture of the Violin. It was at 
Rome that his first twelve Sonatas were published, 
in 1683. In 1685 the second set appeared, entitled 
" Bailed da Camera " ; four years later the third 
set was published. The genius of Corelli may 
be said to have revolutionised Violin-playing. 
He had followers in the chief cities of Italy. 
There was Vitali at Modena, Visconti at Cremona 
(who, it is said, tendered his advice to Stradivari 
upon the construction of his instruments advice, 
I think, little needed) ; Veracini at Bologna, and 
a host of others. Dibdin, the Tyrtseus of the 
British navy, said : " I had always delighted in 
Corelli, whose harmonies are an assemblage 



380 THE VIOLIN 

of melodies. I, therefore, got his Concertos in 
single parts, and put them into score, by which 
means I saw all the workings of his mind at the 
time he composed them ; I so managed that I 
not only comprehended in what manner the parts 
had been worked, but how, in every way, they 
might have been worked. From this severe but 
profitable exercise, I drew all the best properties 
of harmony, and among the rest I learnt the 
valuable secret, that men of strong minds may 
violate to advantage many of those rules of com- 
position which are dogmatically imposed." 

We must now retrace our steps somewhat, in 
order to allude to another Violinist, who influenced 
the progress of the leading instrument out of 
Italy, viz., Jean Baptiste Lulli. The son of a 
Tuscan peasant, born in the year 1633, Lulli's 
name is so much associated with the romantic in 
the history of Violin-playing that he has been 
deprived in a great measure of the merits justly 
his due for the part he took in the advancement 
of the instrument. The story of Lulli and the 
stew-pans J bristles with interest for juvenile 

1 Lulli having shown a disposition for music, received 
some instructions on the rudiments of the art from a 
priest. The Chevalier de Guise, when on his travels in 
Italy, had been requested by Mademoiselle de Montpensier, 
niece of Louis XIV., to procure for her an Italian boy as 
page, and happening to see Lulli in Florence, he chose 
him for that purpose, on account of his wit and vivacity, 
and his skill in playing on the guitar. The lady, however 




AXTOXIO STRADIVARI. 

1690. 
(Made for Cosimo III. de Medici, Grand Duke of Florence.) 



Plate 21. 



, [7b face p. 380. 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 381 

musicians, but the hero is often overlooked by 
graver people, on account of his culinary associa- 
tions. When Lulli was admitted to the Violin 
band of Louis XIV., he found the members very 
incompetent ; they could not play at sight, and 
their style was of the worst description. The king 
derived much pleasure from listening to Lulli's 
music, and established a new band on purpose 
for the composer, namely, " Les petits Violons," 
to distinguish it from the band of twenty-four. 
He composed much music for the Court ballets 
in which the king danced. 

Lulli contributed greatly to the improvement of 
French music. He wrote several operas, and many 
compositions for the Church, all of which served 
to raise the standard of musical taste in France. 
To him also belongs the credit of having founded 
the French national opera. 

We will now endeavour to trace the progress of 
the Violin in England. It is gratifying to learn 
that, even in the primitive age of Viofin-playing, we 
were not without our national composers for the 
instrument. Dr. Benjamin Rogers wrote airs in 
four parts for Violins so early as 1653 (the year 
Corelli was born). John Jenkins wrote twelve 

not liking his appearance, sent him into her kitchen, where 
he was made an under scullion, and amused himself by 
arranging the stew-pans in tones and semitones, upon 
which he would play various airs, to the utter dismay of 
the cook, 



382 THE VIOLIN 

sonatas for two Violins and a Bass, printed in 
London in 1660, which were the first sonatas 
written by an Englishman. About this date 
Charles II. established his band of twenty-four 
Violins. During his residence on the Continent 
he had frequent opportunities of hearing the leading 
instrument, and seems to have been so much 
impressed with its beauties that he set up for 
himself a similar band to that belonging to the 
French Court. The leader was Thomas Baltzar, 
who was regarded as the best player of his time. 
Anthony Wood met Baltzar at Oxford, and says he 
"saw him run up his fingers to the end of the 
finger-board of the Violin, and run them back 
insensibly, and all in alacrity and in very good time, 
which he nor any one in England saw the like 
before." Wood tells us that Baltzar " was buried 
in the cloister belonging to St. Peter's Church in 
Westminster." The emoluments attached to the 
Royal band, according to Samuel Pepys, appear 
to have been somewhat irregular. In the Diary, 
December 19, 1666, we read: "Talked of the 
King's family with Mr. Kingston, the organist. 
He says many of the musique are ready to starve, 
they being five years behindhand for their wages ; 
nay, Evens, the famous man upon the Harp, having 
not his equal in the world, did the other day die for 
mere want, and was fain to be buried at the alms 
of the parish, and carried to his grave in the dark 
at night without one linke, but that Mr. Kingston 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 383 

met it by chance, and did give I2d. to buy two or 
three links." 

The state of the Merry Monarch's exchequer in 
1662, according to an extract from the Emoluments 
of the Audit Office, seems to have been singularly 
prosperous. An order runs as follows : " These 
are to require you to pay, or cause to be paid, to 
John Banister, one of His Majesty's musicians in 
ordinary, the sum of forty pounds for two Cremona 
Violins, by him bought and delivered for His 
Majesty's service, as may appear by the bill 
annexed ; and also ten pounds for strings for two 
years ending 24th June, 1662." 

The King's band was led in 1663 by the above- 
named John Banister, who was an excellent 
Violinist. His name is associated with the earliest 
concerts in England, namely, those held at "four 
of the clock in the afternoon " at the George 
Tavern, in Whitefriars. Roger North informs 
us the shopkeepers and others went to sing 
and "enjoy ale and tobacco," and the charge 
was one shilling and " call for what you 
please." 

In the year 1683, Henry Purcell, organist of the 
Chapel Royal, published twelve sonatas for two 
Violins and a Bass. These famous instrumental 
compositions were written, the author tells us, in 
"just imitation of the most famed Italian masters, 
principally to bring the seriousness and gravity of 
that sort of musick into vogue." Purcell, in con- 



384 THE VIOLIN 

formity with an age of dedications, thus addressed 
the Merry Monarch : 

" May it please your Majesty, I had not assum'd the con- 
fidence of laying ye following compositions at your sacred feet, 
but that, as they are the immediate results of your Majestie's 
Royal favour and benignity to me (which have made me 
what I am), so I am constrained to hope I may presume 
amongst others of your Majestie's over-obliged and altogether 
undeserving subjects that your Majesty will, with your 
accustomed clemency, vouchsafe to pardon the best en- 
deavours of your Majestie's 

" Most humble and obedient subject and servant, 

" H. PURCELL." 



Charles II. is said to have understood his notes, 
and to sing in (in the words of one who had sung 
with him) a plump bass, but that he only tooked 
upon music as an incentive to mirth, not caring for 
any that he could not "stamp the time to." The 
endeavour of his accomplished and gifted young 
organist to lead the King and his people to admire 
what he terms " the seriousness and gravity " of 
Italian music, and " to loathe the levity and balladry 
of our neighbours," was indeed worthy of England's 
greatest musician. 

In the year 1678, Thomas Britton, known as the 
"musical small-coal man," gave concerts in this 
country, and a long series it was, extending over a 
period of forty-six years. The shape the move- 
ment took was that of a musical club, which was 
maintained at Britton's expense. 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 385 

The concert-room of Tom Britten was over 
his coal-shop in Aylesbury Street, leading from 
Clerkenwell Green to St. John Street. From 
the year 1678 to the time of his death, in 1714, the 
concerts of Britton were attended by persons of 
all ranks. 

"Tho' mean thy rank, yet in thy humble cell, 
Did gentle peace and arts unpurchased dwell. 
Well pleased, Apollo thither led his train, 
And Music warbled in her sweetest strain. 
Cyllenius too, so fables tell, and Jove 
Came willing guests to poor Philemon's grove. 
Let useless pomp behold, and blush to find 
So low a station, such a liberal mind." 1 

Thus the first germ of the great musical societies 
gave a marked impulse to the culture of stringed 
music in England. Attention was turned to the 
subject ; its humanising effects were recognised, and 
parties met in several places for the practice of 
chamber music. Our progress in Violin-playing 
at this date was clearly satisfactory. We had a 
Violinist named John Henry Eccles, belonging 
to a clever family of musicians. He became a 
member of the band of Louis XIV., and was 
regarded as an excellent player and musician. 
He published in Paris some solos for the Violin 
in 1720. His brother Thomas was also a good 

1 These verses were written by Mr. John Hughes, who was 
a frequent performer on the Violin at Britton's concerts. 
(Hawkins.) 

CC 



386 THE VIOLIN 

Violinist. Fortune, however, did not smile upon 
him. He is described as being one of those 
itinerant musicians perhaps the last of them 
who in winter evenings went to taverns, and for a 
slender subsistence bore the insults of those dis- 
inclined to listen to their performance. This order 
of itinerant musicians may be described as having 
descended from the Fiddling minstrels, whom the 
wealthy in earlier times often retained in their 
houses, giving them coats and badges bearing the 
family arms. These musicians, in place of amusing 
the nobility, ultimately attended wakes and fairs. 
They were sometimes retained at the large inns, 
where the guest while eating, an old English writer 
says, was "offered music, which he may freely take 
or refuse, and if he be solitary the musicians will 
give him the good day, with music in the morning." 
In Puritan times this class of musician was thought 
to have so much increased as to need a special act 
for their suppression, which gave rise to Butler's 
creation, the "Champion Crowdero." Returning 
to our subject with Thomas Eccles, we have the 
following interesting account of the unfortunate 
Violinist, by a musician : "It was about the month 
of November, 1753, that I, with some friends, were 
met to spend the evening at a tavern in the City, 
when this man, in a mean but decent garb, was 
introduced to us by the waiter ; immediately upon 
opening the door I heard the twang of one of his 
strings from under his coat, which was accompanied 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 387 

by the question, ' Gentlemen, will you please to 
hear my music ? ' Our curiosity, and the modesty 
of the man's deportment, inclined us to say yes, and 
music he gave us, such as I had never heard before, 
nor shall again under the same circumstances. 
With as fine and delicate a hand as I ever heard, 
he played the whole fifth and ninth solos of Corelli, 
and two songs of Mr. Handel ; in short, his per- 
formance was such as would command the attention 
of the nicest ear, and left us his auditors much at 
a loss to guess what it was that constrained him 
to seek his living in a way so disreputable. He 
made no secret of his name ; he said he was the 
youngest of three brothers, and that Henry, the 
middle one, had been his master, and was then in 
the service of the King of France. He lodged in 
the Butcher Row, near Temple Bar, and was well 
known to the musicians of his time, who thought 
themselves disgraced by this practice of his, for 
which they have a term of reproach not very 
intelligible ; they call it going a-busking" x 

I have now to mention a Violinist whose talents 
raised the instrument greatly, particularly in 
England, viz., Francesco Geminiani. He was 
instructed by Corelli, and imbibed much of his 
master's breadth of style. He came to England 
in the year 1714. In 1716 he published a set of 
twelve sonatas, which attracted some notice at the 

1 The term "busker" is still applied to musicians who 
perform outside public-houses, on steamboats, and elsewhere. 



388 THE VIOLIN 

time from their novelty. In these he plunged into 
difficulties deemed then very unusual, but withal 
his compositions were elegantly written. He after- 
wards wrote and published solos and concertos, be- 
sides a " Treatise on Good Taste," and the " Art 
of Playing on the Violin," the latter being the first 
instruction book for the instrument deserving of 
the name. The instrumental music at this period 
was composed for four Violins, Tenor, Violoncello, 
and Double- Bass, and was called the Concerto 
G rosso. 

Having lightly sketched the progress of the 
Violin in England down to about the year 1750, 
it will, perhaps, be better to take the thread of the 
instrument's progress in Italy, which we brought to 
the days of Corelli. 

The first half of the i8th century was rich in 
Italian Violinists and writers for the instrument, 
of whom the chief was Giuseppe Tartini, born 1692. 
Dr. Burney says of his compositions : " Though he 
made Corelli his model in the purity of his harmony 
and simplicity of his modulation, he greatly sur- 
passed that composer in the fertility and originality 
of his invention ; not only in the subjects of his 
melodies, but in the truly cantabile manner of 
treating them. Many of his adagios want nothing 
but words to be excellent pathetic opera songs. 
His allegros are sometimes difficult ; but the passages 
fairly belong to the instrument for which they were 
composed, and were suggested by his consummate 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 389 

knowledge of the finger-board and the powers of 
the bow. As a harmonist he was, perhaps, more 
truly scientific than any other composer of his 
time, in the clearness, character, and precision of his 
Basses, which were never casual, or the effect of 
habit or auricular prejudice and expectation, but 
learned, judicious, and certain." It would be 
difficult to add to this judgment of the compositions 
of Tartini. The truth of Burney's remarks is 
better understood at this moment than when penned. 
During the space of nearly a century the sonatas 
of Tartini lay dormant, and only within recent 
years have their beauties been again recognised. 
Such works as Tartini's are all-important links in 
the chain of musical progress. 

Pietro Locatelli, a pupil of Corelli, introduced 
a style of playing quite in advance of his time. 
His compositions abound with novel combinations ; 
double stops, harmonics, and arpeggios are dis- 
played with wonderful results. Burney says that 
" Locatelli had more hand, caprice, and fancy than 
any Violinist of his time." 

The immediate follower of the style of Locatelli 
was Lolli, born 1728, who wrote pleasing airs and 
used novel effects, but failed to go further. It 
was one of his feats to play on one string a 
performance, very properly held in contempt in 
our day, having neither sense nor grace to 
recommend it. 

Felice Giardini was another musician of the style 



390- THE VIOLIN 

of Locatelli. 1 He was born at Turin, in the year 
1716. His performance at Naples and Berlin 
excited considerable notice. In 1742 he visited 
England, and created some sensation, his style 
being new to the British public. 

Boccherini probably did more towards furthering 
the cultivation of stringed instrument music than 
any composer of his day, with the exception of 
Haydn. There are in his compositions movements 
of varied styles, well written for their respective 
instruments. His quintettes are among his chief 
productions, and their elegance and brilliancy are 
remarkable. The part allotted to his own instru- 
ment, the Violoncello, often bristles with diffi- 
culties, and hence it is that these compositions are 
so seldom heard. Boccherini was the first composer 
who wrote quintettes with two Violoncello parts. 

We now reach a stage in the history of the progress 
of the Violin the importance of which cannot be 
over-estimated ; I refer to the influence which 
the compositions of Giovanni Battista Viotti exerted 
upon the cultivation of our instrument. With the 
famous Viotti sprang up a school of Violin-playing 
as marked in style as that introduced by Corelli. 
Viotti was a pupil of Pugnani, and owed 
his success to the rare teaching of that master. 

1 In " Les Maitres Classiques," edited by M. Alard, and the 
u Hohe Schule," edited by Ferdinand David, will be found 
some of the best examples of this composer, as well as of 
many others noticed here. 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 391 

The sensation that Viotti created in Paris was 
great. His varied style, his rich tone and elegance 
in playing, were far beyond anything that the 
Parisian public had previously experienced. With 
Viotti was ushered in a new era in solo playing. His 
concertos exhibit the capabilities of the instrument 
in elegantly constructed passages, such as none but 
a master of the Violin could pen. He wrote up- 
wards of twenty concertos, those in A minor, in 
G, in D, and in E minor being the favourites, 
and to this day highly esteemed by Violinists of 
every school. His duos and trios are pleasing and 
effective, and, though long since superseded by 
works of greater erudition, they form a landmark in 
the history of the progress of the instrument. 

Campagnoli, born in 1751, was a composer of rare 
ability. Had he written nothing but the " Studies 
on the Seven Positions of the Violin " he would 
have left enough to mark the character of his 
genius. Happily he has bequeathed to us many 
other writings. The " Fantasias and Cadences," 
forming a book of upwards of 100 pages, is a work 
full of interest to the Violinist. His modulations 
are singularly effective. He has also written some 
Studies for the Tenor, and, lastly, a " Violin 
School." I cannot but think that Campagnoli's 
educational compositions do not receive the 
attention which they merit, and are too often laid 
aside as old-fashioned. There is a certain quaint- 
ness in his writings, but this much may be said of 



392 THE VIOLIN 

many other compositions whose beauties are not 
neglected on that account. It would be difficult 
to find material more solid than that afforded by 
the writings of Campagnoli, if the foundation of 
Violin-playing of the highest character is to be 
laid. 

We reach the pinnacle of the Italian school of 
Violin-playing in the wondrous Paganini ; born 
February 18, 1784, died May 27, 1840. It is 
needless to recount the extraordinary achievements 
of this remarkable man. M. Fetis and others 
have collected the most interesting particulars 
relative to Paganini and his compositions, and to 
their entertaining accounts the reader can turn for 
information. It is sufficient to mention that Paga- 
nini carried the marvellous in Violin-playing as far 
as seems possible. The number of his imitators 
has been enormous, and many of them, withal, so 
barbarous as to render anything savouring of " a 
la Paganini " contemptible. The compositions of 
Paganini are no longer Paganini's when played by 
others. He, above all Violinists that ever lived, 
possessed an individuality in his style of playing 
which has hitherto defied imitation. 

From Paganini to his pupil Camillo Sivori is the 
next step in my notice. The artistic career of 
Sivori was a glorious one. Elegance of style and 
charming purity of tone were qualities peculiarly 
his. 

Antonio Bazzini, both as a solo Violinist and 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 393 

composer for the instrument, has achieved lasting 
fame. 

Having endeavoured to lightly sketch the history 
of Italian performers, and of Italian music bearing 
on the instrument to the present time, it remains to 
notice a remarkable follower of the Italian school 
of Violin- playing in the Norwegian, Ole Bornemann 
Bull. The executive skill of this famous Violinist 
was of the highest order, and perhaps no other 
artist, with the exception of Paganini, gained such a 
world-wide renown. 

It is now necessary to refer to the course of 
events touching the Violin in France. As the 
influence of Viotti resulted in a remodelling of the 
French style of playing, our survey will make it 
necessary to go back the greater part of a century. 

Jean Marie Leclair, the pupil of Somis, is the first 
Violinist deserving of mention. He was born at 
Lyons in 1697. In 1729 he visited Paris, where he 
was engaged at the opera. He wrote several 
sonatas for Violin and Bass, and for two Violins 
and Bass, besides other compositions. The diffi- 
culties occurring in many of these writings are of no 
ordinary character, and if they were rendered with 
anything approaching to exactness, the progress 
made on the Violin must have been very rapid 
between the days of Lulli and those of Leclair. 

Pierre Gavinies claims attention both as an 
executant and composer. There is a freshness 
about his compositions which has caused many of 



394 THE VIOLIN 

them to be recently roused from their long sleep, 
and re-issued in the improved garb of a modern 
edition. His best-known works are the twenty- 
four Studies, Concertos, and Sonatas. 

Although there were several Violinists in France 
of average ability between the time of Gavinies and 
that of Rode, they scarcely claim attention in this 
somewhat hasty sketch ; and I will, therefore, pass 
to the players linked with Viotti to his pupil Rode. 
He was born at Bordeaux in 1774. Fetis remarks, 
" From Corelli to Rode there is no hiatus in the 
school, for Corelli was the master of Somis, Somis 
of Pugnani, Pugnani of Viotti, and Viotti of Rode." 

His twenty-four Caprices, and his Concertos and 
Airs, are much admired by all Violinists for their 
elegance and effectiveness. Paganini played the 
concertos of Rode publicly upon several occasions ; 
Baillot and Kreutzer were associated with Rode at 
the Paris Conservatoire, and likewise in the com- 
pilation of the well-known Instruction Book written 
expressly for the use of the pupils at the Conser- 
vatoire. Baillot was famed for his admirable bow- 
ing and refined playing. Kreutzer is, of course, 
better known from his Forty Studies than from 
anything else that he has written. His concertos 
partake more of the study than of the name they 
bear, and are valued accordingly. 

Lafont was instructed by both Rode and Kreut- 
zer, and held a high position among the Violinists 
of his time. 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 395 

Frar^ois Antoine Habeneck was a pupil of Baillot 
at the Paris Conservatoire, where he distinguished 
himself, and became a professor. Among his pupils 
were Alard, Sainton, and Deldevez. 

M. Alard was born in 1815. He succeeded 
Baillot at the Conservatoire in 1843, holding the 
position for many years, and retiring shortly after 
the death of his father-in-law, M. Vuillaume. 
M. Alard was the master of Sarasate. M. Sainton 
was born in 1813 at Toulouse. He took the 
first prize at the Conservatoire in 1834. He 
settled in London in 1845. Shortly afterwards 
he became principal professor of the Violin at the 
Royal Academy of Music, and leader under Signer 
Costa. 

It now remains for me to notice the Belgian 
school. The first to name is Charles de Be"riot, 
one of the most delicious players we have had. 
As a composer for his instrument, he opened up 
entirely fresh ground ; he banished all that was dry, 
and gave us those fresh and pleasant Airs with 
Variations, and Morceaux de Salon, teeming with 
novel effects. It can never be said that De Beriot 
alarmed the amateurs with outrageous difficulties ; 
on the contrary, he gave them passages compara- 
tively easy to execute, full of effect, and yet withal 
astonishing to the listener. De Beriot probably 
made more amateur Violinists than any composer 
of his time. 

Henri Vieuxtemps was a thorough master of his 



396 THE VIOLIN 

art. His Concertos are compositions worthy of the 
title they bear ; they do not consist of a number of 
difficulties strung together without meaning, but 
are properly constructed works. He has written 
many Fantasias, all of which are the delight of 
good Violinists. His compositions being most 
difficult to render, they are chiefly known among 
artists, but in these days of rapid development in 
Violin-playing among amateurs, a new and wide 
field will certainly be opened for them. 

From Belgium to Poland seems a wide step in 
my discourse, but it is really not so. Although the 
Polish Violinists retain much originality in their 
style of playing and compositions, it is to the 
French school that they belong. Lipinski, Wie- 
niawski, and Lotto were all educated in the Paris 
school. 

Lipinski has written a good deal for his instru- 
ment, and instructed many well-known players. 

Henri Wieniawski was essentially a great artist. 
He was a marvellous Violinist, and displayed great 
genius as a composer for his instrument. 

Adolphe Pollitzer settled in London many years 
since, and occupied a leading position among our 
resident Violinists. 

Having lightly touched upon the various heads 
of the French school, I must again take up the 
thread of the English history of the instrument from 
about 1750, at which period we may trace a grow- 
ing admiration for Violin-playing, notwithstanding 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 397 

the disparagement which this accomplishment re- 
ceived from different notabilities. Foremost among 
the revilers stands Lord Chesterfield, who con- 
sidered playing upon any musical instrument to be 
illiberal in a gentleman. The Violin would seem 
to have been regarded by his lordship with a 
supreme amount of displeasure. His opinion of 
Violinists savoured greatly of that held by the 
framers of the statute passed in the reign of Eliza- 
beth touching minstrels, who were to be included 
among "rogues, vagabonds, and sturdy beggars" 
wandering abroad. Lord Chesterfield says, " Music 
is usually reckoned one of the liberal arts, and not 
unjustly, but a man of fashion who is seen piping 
or Fiddling at a concert degrades his own dignity. 
If you love music, hear it ; pay Fiddlers to play for 
you, but never Fiddle yourself" Such was Lord 
Chesterfield's advice to his son. It is quite evident 
that he had no notion of the exquisite enjoyment 
derivable from being an executant in a quartette, the 
conversational powers of which have been so fre- 
quently noticed. That Lord Chesterfield's strictures 
discouraged the practice of the Violin in the higher 
circles of society is very probable, appearing as they 
do in a work which was held in the light of a text- 
book upon the conduct of a gentleman for some 
considerable time. Happily, the hollowness of 
much of his advice came to be recognised, and he 
who deemed cards and dice a necessary step towards 
fashionable perfection, and ordained that Fiddlers 



398 THE VIOLIN 

were to be paid to play for you as substitutes for 
your own personal degradation, came to be remem- 
bered, possibly, more on account of the laxity of his 
precepts than for any other reason. 

In the days of Lord Chesterfield lived Michael 
Christian Festing, who was particularly zealous in 
the cause of music. He was a pupil of Geminiani, 
and wrote several solos. Festing still further 
carried out the idea of Britton, the "small-coal 
man," by bringing together a number of noblemen 
and gentlemen amateurs for the practice of con- 
certed music. They met at the Crown and Anchor 
Tavern in the Strand, and named their society the 
" Philharmonic." So much for his furtherance of 
the art. It now remains to notice the great boon 
which Festing conferred upon his brother professors 
and their descendants. It is this which has given 
his memory lasting life in the annals of English 
music. 

We are indebted to Festing as the chief instru- 
ment in the formation of the Royal Society of 
Musicians, which he may be said to have founded 
in the year 1738. This society derived its origin 
from the following curious circumstance. Festing 
being one day seated at the window of the Orange 
Coffee House, then at the corner of the Haymarket, 
observed a very intelligent-looking boy, who was 
driving an ass and selling brickdust. The lad was 
in a deplorable condition, and excited the pity of 
the kind-hearted musician, who made inquiries con- 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 399 

cerning him, and discovered that he was the son 
of an unfortunate professor of music. Struck with 
grief and mortification that the forlorn object before 
him should be the child of a brother musician, 
Festing resolved to attempt something for the boy's 
maintenance. Shortly after, with the help of other 
benevolently-disposed persons, he raised a fund for 
the support of decayed musicians and their families, 
and thus laid the foundation of the society, which is 
the first of its kind in Europe. Handel was one of 
its first and principal members, and left it a legacy 
of ;i,ooo. Little did Festing and his supporters 
dream that their society, humble enough in 1738, 
would grow into a society possessing ,80,000 in 
1874 a sum which, however high-sounding, was 
all-insufficient to permit the committee to dispense 
the amount of good desired. 

Returning again to our subject, we find that in 
Festing's lifetime there were several patrons of the 
art, the chief of whom were the Prince of Wales, the 
Duke of Cumberland, and the Earl of Mornington. 
Speaking of the Earl, the Hon. Daines Harrington 
says he " furnishes an instance of early attention to 
musical instruments. His father played well for a 
gentleman, on the Violin, which always delighted 
the child while in his nurse's arms, and long before 
he could speak." When he was nine years old, 
"an old portrait-painter came to the family seat, 
who was a very indifferent performer on the Violin, 
but persuaded the child that if he tried to play on 



400 THE VIOLIN 

that instrument, he would soon be able to bear a 
part in a concert. With this inducement he soon 
learned the two old catches of the ' Christ-Church 
Bells,' and ' Sing one, two, three, come follow me ; ' 
after which, his father and the painter accompany- 
ing him with the other two parts, he experienced the 
pleasing effects of a harmony to which he himself 
contributed. Soon after this he was able to play 
the second Violin in Corelli's sonatas, which gave 
him a steadiness in time that never deserted him." 

We may now glance at the period when Salomon 
came to England in 1781. Too much stress can 
scarcely be laid upon the good effected by Salomon's 
talents for the progress of music, and more particu- 
larly in behalf of instrumental music. We are 
deeply indebted to this musician for the spirit and 
enterprise which he displayed, in bringing to Eng- 
land, at no trifling pecuniary risk, the immortal 
Haydn. Salomon having established a series of 
twenty concerts in 1 790, it occurred to him that to 
invite the famous musician to London would aid his 
enterprise. He communicated with Haydn, offer- 
ing him the sum of fifty pounds for each concert. 
These terms were accepted, and Haydn set out 
for London, at the age of fifty-nine. He remained 
in England over a year, and composed the cele- 
brated u Twelve Symphonies " known as the 
Salomon set. Salomon was one of the promoters 
of the Philharmonic Society, and led the orchestra 
at the first concert given by the society in 1813. 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 401 

Enough has been said to show the nature of the 
part he took in the development of music in Eng- 
land. Enjoying the friendship of those who moved 
in the higher circles of society, where his polished 
manners and high attainments ever made him a 
welcome guest, he was enabled to command such 
patronage as to make his laudable ventures suc- 
cessful. 

Among the Violinists of Salomon's day, resident 
in England, were William and Frangois Cramer, 
to whom severally were assigned the leader- 
ship of the Ancient Concerts and of the 
Opera. 

The next Violinist who gained some celebrity 
was Nicholas Mori, born in London in the year 
1796. He was associated with the formation of 
the Royal Academy of Music, in Tenterden 
Street, and became the principal instructor on 
the Violin at that institution. Paolo Diana (a 
Cremonese known under his adopted name of 
Spagnoletti) and Kieswetter each contributed 
his share towards the advancement of the in- 
strument during their stay in this country. 

The names of Dando and Henry Blagrove 
bring us to the players of our own time. These 
thoroughly representative English Violinists have 
done much to raise the standard of the public 
taste. In the year 1835, the " Concerti da 
Camera" were established (in imitation of those 
given in Paris by Pierre Baillot), and served to 

DD 



402 THE VIOLIN 

extend our knowledge of classical chamber music. 
The formation of the Musical Union still further 
increased our knowledge and taste in the same 
direction. The long roll of celebrated Continental 
artists introduced at the Society's concerts suffi- 
ciently stamps its character. All that remained 
to be done was to make the Quartette popular, 
and to bring it within the reach of all. This 
has been achieved by the indefatigable labours 
of Mr. Chappell in his Monday Popular Concerts. 
For some time the public failed to appreciate 
Mr. Chappell's scheme, but the enterprising 
director, nothing daunted, continued his course, 
and had ultimately the gratification of being be- 
sieged in his citadel at St. James's Hall, from 
the commencement of the season to its close. 

Before closing our remarks on the progress 
of Violin-playing in England, we have still to 
mention a few other names in connection with 
this subject. Henry C. Cooper was a Violinist 
who ranked with the chief representatives of the 
English Soloists, and during a long professional 
career achieved much success. He set on foot, 
together with his coadjutors, M. Sainton, Hill, 
and Signor Piatti, the Quartette Association, 
the concerts of which were given at Willis's 
Rooms during several seasons. The career of 
Mr. John Carrodus was watched by his brother 
artists with much interest. As a pupil of Herr 
Molique, he gave early signs of exceptional 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 403 

talents ; it was felt that he must inevitably come 
to the front ; all that was predicted, and even 
more, in due time came to pass. He achieved 
a commanding position among the foremost 
Violinists of our time, both as a soloist and 
leader. With the names of Messrs. Henry and 
Alfred Holmes, I come to a close of the English 
branch of the subject. The brothers Holmes 
attracted the notice of Spohr, who was so de- 
lighted with their abilities that he composed 
and dedicated to them three Duets for two 
"Violins. 

The first name of any note in connection with 
the Violin in Germany is that of Graun, who 
was born in the year 1700. He became concert- 
master to the King of Prussia, and excelled as a 
Violinist. His pupil, Francis Benda, next claims 
attention. Dr. Burney says of him : " His manner 
was neither that of Tartini nor of Veracini, nor 
that of any other leader ; it was purely his own, 
though founded on the several models of the 
greatest masters;" and Hillar tells us that "his 
tones were of the finest description, the clearest 
and most euphonious that can be imagined." 
Benda published studies for his instrument, 
and also several solos and other works, all of 
which are admired for their good and cantabile 
style. 

About this period appeared the admirable 
compositions for the Violin of that great master 



404 THE VIOLIN 

of his art, John Sebastian Bach works differing 
essentially from those of his contemporaries. 

"He was not of an age, but for all time." 

To describe the character and beauties of Bach's 
Violin writings is within neither my province nor 
capacity. As an amateur Violinist and an observer 
of all that relates to the Violin, I may refer, 
however, to the vast amount of good which the 
compositions of Bach have exercised upon the 
cultivation of Violin-playing, and the marvellous 
development that they have received at the hands 
of many of our leading Violinists. For this happy 
state of things we are largely indebted to Herr 
Joachim ; but for him these treasures might have 
remained hidden behind a cloud of airs varies, 
fantasias, and what not, for many a year to come. 
Herr Joachim has made the Sonatas of Bach 
familiar to thousands who a few years since scarcely 
knew of their existence. The difficulties which 
abound in these solid writings could only have been 
written by a master perfectly acquainted with the 
capabilities of the instrument. Many a tyro who 
plunges into the stream of Bach's crotchets and 
quavers soon finds himself encompassed by a 
whirlpool of seeming impossibilities, and is fre- 
quently heard to exclaim that the passages are 
impracticable. Vain delusion ! Bach was himself 
a Violinist, and never penned a passage the 
rendering of which is impossible. The ease and 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 405 

grace with which a Joachim makes every note 
heard and felt, induces many a one to wrestle with 
Bach, the more so when it is found that the great 
author has confined himself to the lower positions 
of the instrument. Vain delusion number two ! 
Bach exacts more on terra firma than many later 
writers have claimed in their wildest aerial flights. 

From Bach to Handel is an easy step in our 
discourse. They were born within a year of each 
other, and were possessed of minds of similar 
calibre, though differently exercised. It would 
not, perhaps, be over-strained to call them re- 
spectively the Nelson and Wellington of music. 
The compositions of Handel materially advanced 
the Violin. His Overtures, Trios, Sonatas, and 
Concertos, were all received with the utmost 
attention, and led on to works by later com- 
posers, which would probably have never existed 
but for Handel's example. 

We now reach the time when the Symphony 
was perfected by Haydn, who, following the steps 
of Bach, brought this branch of the art to a 
degree of perfection hitherto unknown. The in- 
fluence of this composer on the progress of the 
Violin cannot be over-estimated. The Quartettes 
of Haydn are too well known to need more than 
mention here. . The Quartettes of Giardini and 
Pugnani were laid aside to give place to these in- 
spired compositions. The following amusing com- 
parison, drawn by a lady, between the Quartettes 



4 o6 THE VIOLIN 

of Haydn and the speech of articulate humanity 
appears in Bombet's " Letters on Haydn," and, 
though pretty well known, will lose nothing by 
repetition : 

"In listening to the Quartettes of Haydn, this 
lady felt as if present at a conversation of four 
agreeable persons. She thought that the first 
Violin had the air of an eloquent man of genius, 
of middle age, who supported a conversation, the 
subject of which he had suggested. In the second 
Violin she recognised a friend of the first, who 
sought by all possible means to display him to 
advantage, seldom thought of himself, and kept 
up the conversation rather by assenting to what 
was said by the others than by advancing any 
ideas of his own. The Alto was a grave, learned, 
and sententious man. He supported the discourse 
of the first Violin by laconic maxims, striking for 
their truth. The Bass .was a worthy old lady, 
rather inclined to chatter, who said nothing of 
much consequence, and while she was talking the 
other interlocutors had time to breathe. It was, 
however, evident that she had a secret inclination 
for the Alto, which she preferred to the other 
instruments." 

It may be said that the foregoing extract is 
more funny than just. Probably this is the case ; 
however, I make use of it as throwing some light 
on the enjoyment derivable from listening to a 
Quartette, without reference to its critical bearings. 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 407 

Resuming our subject again : Haydn wrote eight 
easy Sonatas for Violin and Pianoforte, but they 
are not of sufficient importance to cause them to 
be much played. Haydn used frequently to take 
the Tenor parts in his Quartettes. 

Leopold Mozart, born in 1719, the father of 
the illustrious musician, was a Violinist, and wrote 
a " Method" for his instrument. He died in 1787. 

To the great Mozart Violinists owe much ; his 
compositions for the instrument raised its standing 
considerably. It is unnecessary to give here a 
detailed list of those of his writings in which the 
Violin takes part they are happily known to most 
players. Mozart played the Violin from boyhood, 
and was taught by his father. It is gratifying to 
know that nearly all the great composers played 
upon stringed instruments, if not with proficiency, 
yet enough to enable them to make pleasurable use 
of their acquirements. Sebastian Bach, Handel, 
and Schubert were Violin-players ; Haydn and 
Mendelssohn could take their Tenor part in a 
Quartette ; and lastly, Beethoven used to amuse 
himself with the Double- Bass. Their compositions 
evidence a practical knowledge of stringed instru- 
ments, as distinct from theory. The glorious com- 
positions of Beethoven for the Violin need no 
comment here ; their beauties have formed the 
theme of the ablest critics ; and I have no desire 
to contribute my humble mite to their exhaustive 
remarks. 



408 THE VIOLIN 

With Fesca we again come amongst the 
Violinists. He was born at Magdeburg, in 1789. 
His Quartettes are very pleasing compositions ; 
they are chiefly " Solo Quartettes." 

The next Violinist claiming attention is the 
highly gifted Louis Spohr, the greatest composer 
for the Violin that ever lived, who combined in 
his own person high executive powers with a rare 
fecundity of classical composition. The Concertos 
of Spohr belong to an entirely different class from 
those of Viotti, Kreutzer, and others, inasmuch as 
Spohr's music is written so as not only to display 
the beauties of the instrument, but also to give 
the noblest specimens of its orchestration. His 
Duets for two Violins, his Tenor and Violin Duets 
and Quartettes, are all too well known to need 
more than passing mention. 

From Spohr has grown up a school of Violin- 
playing of a very distinctive character. Bernard 
Molique was endowed with great powers, both 
as a performer and a composer for his instrument. 
His Concertos are compositions of the highest 
character, and require for their rendering a finished 
artist. 

Joseph Mayseder was a Violinist of an order 
distinct from that of Spohr or Molique. His style 
was exceedingly brilliant. Mayseder may also 
be said to have created a school of his own, 
and, owing to the circulation that his compositions 
obtained in England, his style was introduced 



PROGRESS OF THE VIOLIN 409 

among a great number of our countrymen. Kalli- 
woda wrote and played very much in the Mayseder 
manner. His Airs and Variations are especially 
brilliant compositions ; his Overtures are also 
much admired for their sparkling and dramatic 
character. 

I come now to notice one of the greatest 
artistes of our time Herr Ernst whose playing 
was impassioned -in the highest degree. He 
made the Violin express his innermost thoughts 
in tones of delicious tenderness, such as his 
hearers can never forget. By nature noble, 
generous, and affectionate, the shade and sub- 
stance of each trait was faithfully reflected in his 
exquisite playing. His compositions are among 
the finest solo writings we have. To mention his 
"Otello," "Airs Hongrois," " Le Prophete," and 
his " Studies," will be sufficient to call to the 
mind of most Violinists .the high character of his 
compositions. 

It now only remains for me to briefly allude 
to the German artists each Concert Season 
makes us familiar with. First and foremost, 
the mighty Herr Joachim, a host in himself. 
His able coadjutor, Herr Strauss, was justly 
admired for his intellectual rendering of the great 
masters, and the artistic spirit he invariably dis- 
played. Herr Wilhelmj was regarded as one of 
the first players of our time, his executive powers 
being of the highest order. 



SECTION XV 

Anecdotes and Miscellanea connected -with 
the Violin 




" The Squire, in state, rode on before, 

The Trophy- Fiddle, and the case 
Leaning on shoulder, like a mace." 



HUDIBRAS AND THE CHAMPION CROWDERO. 

r I "HE important part played by the renowned 
-L Champion Crowdero in Butler's inimitable 
satire has never failed to give keen enjoyment to 
all lovers of wit and humour. This being so, his 
exploits should be doubly appreciated by the 
votaries of the Fiddle, since it was he who valiantly 



410 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 411 

defended the cause of Fiddling against the attacks 
of Hudibras 



" When civil dudgeon first grew high, 
And men fell out, they knew not why ; 
When hard words, jealousies, and fears 
Set folks together by the ears, 
And made them fight, like mad or drunk. 

Then did Sir Knight abandon dwelling, 
And out he rode a-colonelling." 

The absurdities into which the genius of Cer- 
vantes hurried Don Quixote and Sancho served to 
moderate the extravagances of knight-errantry. 
The adventures of Hudibras and Ralpho, under- 
taken to extinguish the sports and pastimes of 
the people, aided greatly in staying the hand of 
fanaticism, which had suppressed all stage plays 
and interludes as " condemned by ancient heathens, 
and by no means to be tolerated among professors 
of the Christian religion." 

With Crowdero we are taken back upwards 
of two centuries in the history of the Violin ; from 
times wherein it is held in the highest esteem and 
admiration, to days when it was regarded with 
contempt and ridicule. Crowdero (so called from 
crowd, a Fiddle) was the fictitious name for one 
Jackson, a milliner, who lived in the New Ex- 
change, in the Strand. He had served with the 
Roundheads, and lost a leg, which brought him 



412 THE VIOLIN 

into reduced circumstances, until he was obliged 
to Fiddle from one alehouse to another for his 
existence. Hudibras 

" On stirrup-side, he gaz'd about 
Portending blood, like blazing star, 
The beacon of approaching war. 

Ralpho rode on, with no less speed 
Than Hugo in the forest did ; 
But far more in returning made, 
For now the foe he had survey'd 
Rang'd, as to him they did appear, 
With van, main battle, wings, and rear. 
I' th' head of all this warlike rabble, 
Crowdero marched, expert and able. 
Instead of trumpet and of drum, 
That makes the warrior's stomach come, 
Whose noise whets valour sharp, like beer 
By thunder turn'd to vinegar ; 
(For if a trumpet sound, or drum beat, 
Who has not a month's mind to combat ?) 
A squeaking engine he apply'd 
Unto his neck on north-east side, 1 



1 Several explanations of this passage have been set forth 
by Butler's commentators. Dr. Grey asks, " Why the north- 
east side ? Do Fiddlers always, or most generally, stand or 
sit according to the points of the compass ? " Dr. Nash 
suggests the poet may have had in view " a conceit," which 
is in Brown's u Vulgar Errors,'' viz., that the body of man 
is magnetical, and being placed in a boat will never rest 
till the head respecteth the north. Dr. Nash remarks, 
" Now, the body lying on its back with its head towards 
the north, or standing upright with the face towards the 
east, the reader will find the place of the Fiddle on the 
left breast to be due north-east." 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 413 

Just where the hangman does dispose, 
To special friends, the knot or noose ; 
For 'tis great grace, when statesmen straight 
Dispatch a friend, let others wait. 
His warped ear hung o'er the strings, 
Which was but souse to chitterlings ; x 
For guts, some write, ere they are sodden, 
Are fit for music, or for pudding ; 2 
From whence men borrow ev'ry kind 
Of minstrelsy, by string or wind. 
His grisly beard was long and thick, 
With which he strung his Fiddle-stick ; 
For he to horse-tail scorned to owe 
For what on his own chin did grow. 

And now the field of death, the lists, 
Were enter'd by antagonists, 
And blood was ready to be broach'd, 
When Hudibras in haste approach'd 
With Squire and weapons, to attack 'em ; 
But first thus from his horse bespoke 'em, 
' What rage, O citizens ! What fury 
Doth you to these dire actions hurry ? 

In name of King and Parliament 
I charge ye all no more foment. 

first surrender 

The Fiddler as the prime offender, 
Th' incendiary vile, that is chief 
Author and engineer of mischief ; 



1 Dr. Nash says, " Souse is the pig's ear, and chitterlings 
the pig's guts ; the former alludes to Crowdero's ear, which 
lay on the Fiddle ; the latter to the strings of the Fiddle, 
which are made of catgut." 

2 Black pudding and sausages are placed in skins of gut. 



414 THE VIOLIN 

That makes division between friends 
For profane and malignant ends. 1 
He and that engine of vile noise 



1 This passage evidently refers to Violists meeting to make 
division to a ground, namely, in the words of Christopher 
Simpson, '' A ground, subject, or bass (call it which you 
please) is prickt (written) down in two several papers, one 
for him who is to play the ground (upon an organ, harpsi- 
chord, or other instrument), the other for him who plays 
upon the Viol, who having the said ground before his eye 
(as his theme or subject) plays such variety of descant and 
division thereupon as his skill and present invention do then 
suggest to him." The poet's allusion to " Th' incendiary 
vile (Viol) that is chief author and engineer of mischief" 
humorously points to the popularity of the Viol. The 
poet's mention of persons meeting and performing on their 
Viols, thus making 

" . . . division between friends, 
For profane and malignant ends," 

is evidently a most humorous allusion to the case of the 
Royalist, Sir Roger L'Estrange, the friend of Butler, and to 
whom was given the names of the real persons shadowed 
under fictitious characters in the satire. Sir Roger, whilst 
in St. James's Park, heard an Organ being played in the 
house of one Mr. Hickson. His intense love of music 
prompted him to seek admittance. He found there a 
company of five or six persons, and being himself a good 
Violist, was prevailed upon to take a part. By-and-by 
Cromwell entered, without, Sir Roger explains in a pamphlet 
(" Truth and Loyalty Vindicated," printed the year before 
the first part of Hudibras was published, in 1662), " the 
least colour of a design or expectation." Sir Roger went on 
making division with his Viol, apparently regardless of the 
presence of the Protector and thus earned for himself the 
title of Oliver's Fiddler, besides giving rise to the report 
that he solicited a private conference with Cromwell under 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 415 

On which illegally he plays, 1 

Shall (dictum factum) both be brought 

To condign punishment, as they ought.' 

This said he clapped his hand on sword, 
To show he meant to keep his word. 

He drew up all his force into 
One body and into one blow. 

The Knight, with all its weight, fell down 

Like a feather bed betwixt a wall 
And heavy brunt of cannon ball. 



the pretext of " making division " with his Viol. Dr. John- 
son has truly said of Hudibras, "The manners, being founded 
on opinions, are temporary and local, and therefore become 
every day less intelligible and less striking. . . . Much, 
therefore, of that humour which transported the century 
with merriment is lost to us, who do not know the sour 
solemnity, the sullen superstition, the gloomy moroseness, 
and the stubborn scruples of the ancient Puritans, . . . and 
cannot, but by recollection and study, understand the lines 
in which they are satirised. Our grandfathers knew the 
picture from the life ; we judge of the life by contemplating 
the picture." 

1 Alluding to an ordinance made in 1658 : " And be it 
further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that if any person 
or persons, commonly called Fiddlers, or minstrels, shall 
at any time after the said first day of July (1657) be taken 
playing, Fiddling, and making music in any inn, alehouse, 
or tavern, or shall be taken proffering themselves, or desiring, 
or intreating any person or persons to hear them play, &c., 
&c., shall be adjudged . . . rogues, vagabonds, and sturdy 
beggars." 



416 THE VIOLIN 

Crowdero only kept the field, 
Not stirring from the place he held ; 
Though beaten down and wounded sore, 
I' th' Fiddle, and a leg that bore 
One side of him not that of bone, 
But much its better, th' wooden one. 
He spying Hudibras lie strew'd 
Upon the ground, like log of wood, 

In haste he snatch'd the wooden limb 
That, hurt in th' ankle, lay by him, 
And, fitting it for sudden fight, 
Straight drew it up, t' attack the Knight ; 

Vowing to be reveng'd, for breach 
Of Crowd and skin, upon the wretch, 1 
Sole author of .all detriment 
He and his Fiddle underwent. 



When Ralpho thrust himself between, 

He took the blow upon his arm, 

To shield the Knight from further harm, 

And, joining wrath with force, bestow'd 

On th' wooden member such a load, 

That down it fell and with it bore 

Crowdero, whom it propp'd before. 

To him the Squire right nimbly run, 

And setting his bold foot upon 

His trunk, thus spoke : ' What desp'rate frenzy 

Made thee, thou whelp of sin, to fancy 

Thyself, and all that coward rabble, 

To encounter us in battle able ? 

How durst th', I say, oppose thy curship 



1 Crowd, a Fiddle, and therefore for injury done by 
" breach," or cracks, to Crowdero's instrument. 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 417 

'Gainst arms, authority, and worship, 
And Hudibras or me provoke, 



. . . but first our care 
Must see how Hudibras doth fare.' 
This said, he gently rais'd the Knight, 

To rouse him from lethargic dump, 
He tweak'd his nose with gentle thump, 
Knock'd on his breast, as if't had been 
To raise the spirits lodg'd within ; 
They, waken'd with the noise, did fly 
From inward room to window eye, 
And gently op'ning lid, the casement, 
Look'd out, but yet with some amazement. 
This gladded Ralpho much to see, 
Who thus bespoke the Knight ; quoth he, 
Tweaking his nose, 'You are, great sir, 
A self-denying conqueror ; 
As high, victorious, and great 
As e'er fought for the churches yet. 

. . . The foe, for dread 
Of your nine-worthiness, is fled ; 
All, save Crowdero, for whose sake 
You did th' espous'd cause undertake ; 
And he lies pris'ner at your feet, 
To be disposed as you think meet, 
Either for life, or death, or sale, 
The gallows, or perpetual jail ; 
For one wink of your powerful eye 
Must sentence him to live or die ; 
His Fiddle is your proper purchase, 
Won in the service of the Churches ; 
And "by your doom must be allow'd 
To be or be no more, a Crowd.' 



EE 



418 THE VIOLIN 

. . . The Knight began to rouse, 

And by degrees grew valorous ; 

He stared about, and seeing none 

Of all his foes remain, but one, 

He snatch'd his weapon that lay near him, 

And from the ground began to rear him, 

Vowing to make Crowdero pay 

For all the rest that ran away. 

But Ralpho now, in colder blood, 

His fury mildly thus withstood. 

' Great sir,' quoth he, ' your mighty spirit 

Is raised too high ; this slave doth merit 

To be the hangman's business sooner 

Than from your hand to have the honour 

Of his destruction ; I, that am 

A nothingness in deed and name, 

Did scorn to hurt his forfeit carcase, 

Or ill entreat his Fiddle or case ; 



Will you employ your conq'ring sword 
To break a Fiddle, and your word? 

. . . I think it better far 
To keep him prisoner of war.' 



He liked the squire's advice, and soon 
Resolved to see the business done. 



Ralpho dispatched with speedy haste, 
And having ty'd Crowdero fast, 
He gave Sir Knight the end of cord, 
To lead the captive of his sword. 

The Squire in state rode on before, 
And on his nut-brown whinyard bore 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 419 

The Trophy-Fiddle, and the case 
Leaning on shoulder, like a mace. 1 
The Knight himself did after ride, 
Leading Crowdero by his side, 
And tow'd him if he lagg'd behind, 
Like boat against the tide and wind. 
Thus grave and solemn they march on, 
Until quite thro' the town th' had gone, 
At further end of which there stands 
An ancient castle, that commands 2 
Th' adjacent parts ; in all the fabric 
You shall not see one stone nor a brick 
But all of wood, by powerful spell 
Of magic made impregnable. 

Thither arriv'd, th' advent'rous Knight 
And bold Squire from their steeds alight 
At th' outward wall, near which there stands 
A bastile, built t' imprison hands ; 

On top of this there is a spire 

On which Sir Knight first bids the Squire 

The Fiddle, and its spoils, the case,3 

In manner of a trophy, place. 

That done, they ope the trapdoor gate, 

And let Crowdero down thereat ; 



1 The Fiddle-case referred to is one covered with leather, 
studded with nails, and with a lid opening at the end, and 
might be likened unto a mace. 

2 This is an enigmatical description of a pair of stocks and 
whipping-post. It is so pompous and sublime that we are 
surprised so noble a structure could be raised from so ludicrous 
a subject. We perceive wit and humour in the strongest 
light in every part of the description." Note by Dr. Grey. 

3 Dr. Nash suggests the following rendering : " His spoils, 
the Fiddle, and the case," 



4 20 THE VIOLIN 

Crowdero making doleful face, 
Like hermit poor in pensive place. 
To dungeon they the wretch commit, 
And the survivor of his feet, 
But the other that had broke the peace 
And head of knighthood, they release, 
Though a delinquent false and forged, 
Yet b'ing a stranger, he's enlarged, 
While his comrade that did not hurt 
Is clapp'd up fast in prison for't ; 
So Justice, while she winks at crimes, 
Stumbles on innocence sometimes. 




GEORGE HERBERT S REFERENCES TO MUSIC. 

George Herbert, poet and divine, said of music, 
" That it did relieve his drooping spirits, compose 
his distracted thoughts, and raised his weary soul 
so far above earth, that it gave him an earnest 
of the joys of heaven before he possessed them." 
His worthy biographer, Izaak Walton, tells us 
" His chiefest recreation was music, in which 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 421 

heavenly art he was a most excellent master, and 
did himself compose many divine hymns and 
anthems, which he set and sung to his Lute or 
Viol ; and though he was a lover of retiredness, 
yet his love to music was such that he went 
usually twice every week, on certain appointed 
days, to the Cathedral Church in Salisbury, 
and at his return would say, ' That his time 
spent in prayer and Cathedral music elevated 
his soul, and was his heaven upon earth.' But 
before his return thence to Bemerton, he would 
usually sing and play his part at an appointed 
private music meeting ; and, to justify this 
practice, he would often say, ' Religion does 
not banish mirth, but only moderates and sets 
rules to it.' ' 

In walking to Salisbury upon one occasion to 
attend his usual music meeting, George Herbert 
saw a poor man with a poor horse that was fallen 
under his load. He helped the man to unload and 
re-load ; the poor man blessed him for it, and he 
blessed the poor man. Upon reaching his musical 
friends at Salisbury they were surprised to see him 
so soiled and discomposed ; but he told them the 
occasion, and when one of the company said to 
him "He had disparaged himself by so dirty an 
employment," his answer was, "That the thought 
of what he had done would prove music to him at 
midnight ; and that the omission of it would have 
upbraided and made discord in his conscience when- 



422 THE VIOLIN 

ever he should pass by that place ; ' for if I be bound 
to pray for all that be in distress, I am sure that 
I am bound, so far as it is in my power, to practise 
what I pray for ; and though I do not wish for the 
like occasion every day, yet let me tell you, I would 
not willingly pass one day of my life without com- 
forting a sad soul, or showing mercy ; and I praise 
God for this occasion ; and now let us tune our 
instruments.' ' 

Herbert's love of imagery was often curious 
and startling. In singing of "Easter" he said 

"Awake my lute and struggle for thy part 

With all thy heart. 
The Cross taught all wood to resound His name, 

Who bore the same. 

His stretched sinews taught all strings, what key 
Is best to celebrate this most high day, 
Consort both heart and lute, and twist a song 

Pleasant and long : 
Or since all music is but three parts vied 

And multiplied, 

O let thy blessed spirit bear a part, 
And make up our defects with his sweet art." 

The Sunday before the death of " Holy George 
Herbert," Izaak Walton says, "he rose suddenly 
from his bed, or couch, called for one of his in- 
struments, took it into his hand and said 

" My God, jny God, my music shall find Thee ; 

And every string 
Shall have his attribute to sing." 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 423 

And having tuned it, he played and sung 

" The Sundays of man's life, 

Threaded together on Time's string, 

Make bracelets to adorn the wife 
Of the eternal, glorious King ; 

On Sundays heaven's door stands ope, 
Blessings are plentiful and ripe, 

More plentiful than hope." 

The thought to which Herbert has given ex- 
pression in his lines on Easter that " All music 
is but three parts vied and multiplied " was also 
in the mind of Christopher Simpson, who, in his 
work on "The Division Viol," 1659, uses it as 
a musical illustration of the doctrine of Trinity 
in Unity. He says : " I cannot but wonder, even 
to amazement, that from no more than three 
concords (with some intervening discords) there 
should arise such an infinite variety, as all the 
music that ever has been, or ever shall be, com- 
posed. When I further consider that these sounds, 
placed by the interval of a third one above another, 
do constitute one entire harmony, which governs 
and comprises all the sounds that by art or imagi- 
nation can be joined together in musical con- 
cordance, that, I cannot but think a significant 
emblem of that Supreme and Incomprehensible 
Three in One, governing, comprising, and dis- 
posing the whole machine of the world, with all 
its included parts, in a most perfect and stupendous 
harmony." 



424 THE VIOLIN 

It is interesting to notice an earlier and remark- 
able allusion to the union of sound from the pen 
of Shakespeare 

" If the true concord of well-tuned sounds, 

By unions married, do offend thine ear, 
They do but sweetly chide thee, who confounds 

In singleness the parts that thou shouldst bear. 
Mark how one string, sweet husband to another, 

Strikes each in each by mutual ordering, 
Resembling sire and child and happy mother, 

Who, all in one, one pleasing note do sing." 



VIOLINS FROM A MEDICAL POINT OF VIEW. 

" Music and the sounds of instruments says 
the lively Vigneul de Marville contribute to the 
health of the body and the mind ; they assist 
the circulation of the blood, they dissipate vapours, 
and open the vessels, so that the action of per- 
spiration is freer. He tells the story of a person 
of distinction, who assured him that once being 
suddenly seized by violent illness, instead of a 
consultation of physicians, he immediately called 
a band of musicians, and their Violins played 
so well in his inside that his bowels became 
perfectly in tune, and in a few hours were har- 
moniously becalmed." D' Israeli s " Curiosities of 
Literature." 

Dr. Abercrombie recommends " Careful classi- 
fication of the insane, so that the mild and peace- 
ful melancholic may not be harassed by the ravings 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 425 

of the maniac. The importance of this is obvious ; 
but of still greater importance," he continues, "it 
will probably be to watch the first dawnings of 
reason, and instantly to remove from the patient 
all associates by whom his mind might be again 
bewildered." 

The following case, mentioned by Pinel, is 
certainly an extreme one, but much important 
reflection arises out of it : 

" A musician confined in the Bicetre, as one 
of the first symptoms of returning reason, made 
some slight allusion to his favourite instrument. 
It was immediately procured for him ; he occupied 
himself with music for several hours every day, 
and his convalescence seemed to be advancing 
rapidly. But he was then, unfortunately, allowed 
to come frequently in contact with a furious maniac, 
by meeting him in the gardens. The musician's 
mind was unhinged ; his Violin was destroyed ; 
and he fell back into a state of insanity which 
was considered as confirmed and hopeless." Aber- 
crombies "Intellectual Powers." 

" A MUSICIAN 

is like an Echo, a retail dealer in sounds. As 
Diana is the goddess of the silver bow, so is he 
the Lord of the wooden one ; he has a hundred 
strings in his bow ; other people are bow-legged, 
he is bow-armed; and though armed with a bow 



426 THE VIOLIN 

he has no skill in archery. He plays with cat-gut 
and A^V-Fiddle. His fingers and arms run a 
constant race ; the former would run away from 
him did not a bridge interpose and oblige him 
to pay toll. He can distinguish sounds as other 
men distinguish colours. His companions are 
crotchets and quavers. Time will never be a 
match for him, for he beats him most unmercifully. 
He runs after an Italian air open-mouthed, with 
as much eagerness as some fools have sought the 
philosopher's stone. He can bring a tune over 
the seas, and thinks it more excellent because 
far-fetched. His most admired domestics are 
Soprano, Siciliano, Andantino, and all the Anos 
and Inos that constitute the musical science. 
He can scrape, scratch, shake, diminish, increase, 
flourish, &c. ; and he is so delighted with the 
sound of his own Viol, that an ass would sooner 
lend his ears to anything than to him ; and as 
a dog shakes a pig, so does he shake a note 
by the ear, and never lets it go till he makes it 
squeak. He is a walking pillory, and crucifies 
more ears than a dozen standing ones. He often 
involves himself in dark and intricate passages, 
till he is put to a shift, and obliged to get out 
of a scrape by scraping. His Viol has the effect 
of a Scotch Fiddle, for it irritates his hearers, and 
puts them to the itch. He tears his audience 
in various ways, as I do this subject ; and as 
I wear away my pen, so does he wear away the 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 427 

strings of his Fiddle. There is no medium to 
him ; he is either in a flat or a sharp key, though 
both are natural to him. He deals in third 
minors, and major thirds ; proves a turncoat, and 
is often in the majority and the minority in the 
course of a few minutes. He runs over the 
flat as often as any Newmarket racehorse ; both 
meet the same fate, as they usually terminate 
in a cadence; the difference is one is driven 
by the whip-hand, the other by the bow-arm; 
one deals in stakado, the other in staccato. As 
a thoroughbred hound discovers, by instinct, his 
game from all other animals, so an experienced 
musician feels the compositions of Handel or 
Corelli. Yours, TIMOTHY CATGUT, Stamford." 
Monthly Mirror. 

ORIGIN OF TARTINl's "DEVIL'S SONATA." 

The following interesting account of this mar- 
vellous composition was given by Tartini to 
M. de Lalande, the celebrated astronomer : 

" One night in the year 1713, I dreamed that 
I had made a compact with his Satanic Majesty, 
by which he was received into my service. Every- 
thing succeeded to the utmost of my desire, and 
my every wish was anticipated by this my new 
domestic. I thought that on taking up my Violin 
to practise, I jocosely asked him if he could play 
on that instrument. He answered that he believed 



428 



THE VIOLIN 



he was able to pick out a tune ; and then, to my 
astonishment, began to play a sonata, so , strange 
and yet so beautiful, and executed in so masterly 
a manner, that I had never in my life heard 
anything so exquisite. So great was my amaze- 
ment that I could scarcely breathe. Awakened 
by the violent emotion, I instantly seized my 




Violin, in the hope of being able to catch some 
part of the ravishing melody which I had just 
heard, but all in vain. The piece which I com- 
posed according to my scattered recollection is, 
it is true, the best of my works. I have called 
it the ' Sonata del Diavolo,' but it is so far inferior 
to the one I heard in my dream, that I should 
have dashed my Violin into a thousand pieces, 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 429 

and given up music for ever, had it been possible 
to deprive myself of the enjoyments which I 
derive from it." 

In the "Reminiscences of Michael Kelly" we 
are told that in the year 1/79 Kelly was at 
Florence, and that he was present at a concert 
given at the residence of Lord Cowper, where, 
he says, he had "the gratification of hearing a 
sonata on the Violin played by the great Nardini; 
though very far advanced in years, he played 
divinely. Lord Cowper requested him to play 
the popular sonata, composed by his master, 
Tartini, called the ' Devil's Sonata.' Mr. Jackson, 
an English gentleman present, asked Nardini 
whether the anecdote relative to this piece of 
music was true. Nardini answered that ' he had 
frequently heard Tartini relate the circumstance,' 
and at once gave an account of the composition, 
in accordance with that furnished by M. de 
Lalande." 



DR. JOHNSON AND THE VIOLIN. 

" Dr. Johnson was observed by a musical friend 
of his to be extremely inattentive at a concert, 
whilst a celebrated solo-player was running up 
the divisions and sub-divisions of notes upon 
his Violin. His friend, to induce him to take 
greater notice of what was going on, told him 
how extremely difficult it was. ' Difficult do 



430 THE VIOLIN 

you call it, sir?' replied the Doctor; 'I wish it 
were impossible?" Seward's "Anecdotes of Dr. 
Johnson" 

"In the evening our gentleman farmer and 
two others entertained themselves and the company 
with a great number of tunes on the Fiddle. 
Johnson desired to have ' Let ambition fire thy 
mind ' played over again, and appeared to give 
a patient attention to it ; though he owned to me 
that he was very insensible to the power of music. 
I told him that it affected me to such a degree, 
as often/- to agitate my nerves painfully, producing 
in my mind alternate sensations of pathetic de- 
jection, so that I was ready to shed tears ; and 
of daring resolution, so that I was inclined to 
rush into the thickest part of the battle. ' Sir,' 
said he, ' I should never hear it if it made me 
such a fool.'" Boswell's "Life of Johnson." 

DR. JOHNSON ON THE DIFFICULTY OF PLAYING THE 

FIDDLE. 

" Goldsmith : ' I spoke of Mr. Harris, of Salis- 
bury, as being a very learned man, and in particular 
an eminent Grecian.' 

"Johnson: 'I am not sure of that. His friends 
give him out as such, but I know not who of his 
friends are able to judge of it.' 

" Goldsmith : ' He is what is much better ; he is 
a worthy, humane man.' 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 431 

"Johnson: 'Nay, sir, that is not to the purpose 
of our argument ; that will as much prove that he 
can play upon the Fiddle as well as Giardini, as 
that he is an eminent Grecian." 

" Goldsmith : ' The greatest musical performers 
have but small emoluments ; Giardini, I am 
told, does not get above seven hundred a 
year.'" 

"Johnson : ' That is indeed but little for a man 
to get, who does best that which so many endeavour 
to do. There is nothing, I think, in which the 
power of art is shown so much as in playiag on the 
Fiddle. In all other things we can do something 
at first ; any man will forge a bar of iron if you 
give him a hammer ; not so well as a smith, 
but tolerably ; and make a box, though a clumsy 
one ; but give him a Fiddle and a Fiddlestick, 
and he can do nothing.' " Bo swell's "-Life of 
Johnson" 



DR. JOHNSON S EPITAPH ON PHILLIPS, THE WELSH 
VIOLINIST. 

Johnson and Garrick were sitting together, when 
among other things Garrick repeated an epitaph 
upon Phillips, by a Dr. Wilkes, which was very 
commonplace, and Johnson said to Garrick, " I 
think, Davy, I can make a better." Then, stirring 
about his tea for a little while in a state of 



432 THE VIOLIN 

meditation, he, almost extempore, produced the 
following verses : 

" Phillips, whose touch harmonious could remove 
The pangs 'of guilty power* or hapless love; 
Rest here, distress'd by poverty no more ; 
Here find that calm thou gav'st so oft before ; 
Sleep undisturbed within this peaceful shrine, 
Till angels wake thee with a note like thine ! " 

Boswell says, "Mr. Garrick appears not to have 
recited the verses correctly, the original being 
as follows. One of the various readings is re- 
markable, and it is the germ of Johnson's con- 
cluding line : 

" Exalted soul, thy various sounds could please 
The love-sick virgin, and the gouty ease ; 
Could jarring crowds, like old Amphion, move 
To beauteous order and harmonious love ; 
Rest here in peace, till angels bid thee rise, 
And meet thy Saviour's concert in the skies." 

Boswell's "Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides" 
contains the author's letter to Garrick asking 
him to send the "bad verses which led John- 
son to make his fine verses on Phillips the 
musician." Garrick replied, enclosing the desired 
epitaph. 

Boswell remarks, " This epitaph is so exquisitely 
beautiful that I remember even Lord Kames, 
strangely prejudiced as he was against Dr. 
Johnson, was compelled to allow it very high 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 433 

praise. It has been ascribed to Garrick, from 
its appearing at first with the signature G. ; but 
I heard Mr. Garrick declare that it was written 
by Dr. Johnson." 

The epitaph of Phillips is in the porch of 
Wolverhampton Church. The prose part of it 
is curious : 

Near this place lies 

Charles Claudius Phillips, 

Whose absolute contempt of riches, 

and inimitable performances upon the Violin, 

made him the admiration of all that knew him. 

He was born in Wales, 
made the tour of Europe, 

and, after the experience of both kinds of fortune, 
Died in 1732. 



DR. JOHNSON S KNOWLEDGE OF MUSIC. 

He said he knew "a drum from a trumpet, 
and a bagpipe from a guitar, which was about 
the extent of his knowledge of music." He 
further tells us that " if he had learnt music 
he should have been afraid he should have 
done nothing else but play. It was a method 
of employing the mind, without the labour of 
thinking at all, and with some applause from a 
man's self." These remarks are better appraised 
and understood when we bear in mind Dr. 
Johnson's own estimate of his musical knowledge 
together with his having derived pleasure from 

FF 



434 THE VIOLIN 

listening to the sounds of the bagpipes. If a 
performance on those droning instruments was 
in the Doctor's mind when he said that the 
reflective powers need not be exercised in per- 
forming on a musical instrument, there might be 
some truth in the observation. The labour of 
thinking, however, cannot be dispensed with in 
connection with playing most musical instruments, 
and least of all the Violin. 

DR. JOHNSON ON FIDDLING AND FREE WILL. 

"Johnson : ' Moral evil is occasioned by free 
will, which implies choice between good and evil. 
With all the evil that there is, there is no man 
but would rather be a free agent, than a mere 
machine without the evil ; and what is best for 
each individual must be best for the whole. 
If a man would rather be the machine, I cannot 
argue with him. He is a different being from 
me.' 

" Boswell : 'A man, as a machine, may have 
agreeable sensations ; for instance, he may have 
pleasure in music.' 

"Johnson: 'No, sir, he cannot have pleasure 
in music ; at least no power of producing music ; 
for he who can produce music may let it alone ; 
he who can play upon a Fiddle may break it : 
such a man is not a machine.'" " Tour to the 
Hebrides" 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 435 

HAYDN IN LONDON. A "SWEET STRADIVARI." 
(By PERMISSION OF MR. JOHN MURRAY.) 

The following extracts, taken from " A Country 
Clergyman of the Eighteenth Century," a pleasant 
and entertaining book (consisting of selections 
from the correspondence of the Rev. Thomas 
Twining, M.A.), cannot fail to interest the 
reader. The Rev. Thomas Twining was born 
in 1735. He was an excellent musician, both 
in theory and practice, and a lover of the 
Violin. He had collected much valuable in- 
formation with regard to music, with a view 
to writing a history of the subject. Upon 
learning that Dr. Burney was engaged on his 
History of Music, he not only generously placed 
his valuable notes at the service of the Doctor, 
but revised the manuscript of his friend's History. 
Dr. Burney, in the preface of his work, says : 
"In order to satisfy the sentiments of friendship, 
as well as 'those of gratitude, I must publicly 
acknowledge my obligations to the zeal, intelli- 
gence, taste, and erudition of the Rev. Mr. 
Twining, a gentleman whose least merit is being 
perfectly acquainted with every branch of theo- 
retical and practical music." 

The publication of the volume containing the 
interesting correspondence between Dr. Burney and 
his friend not only serves to enlighten us relative to 



436 THE VIOLIN 

the substantial aid given to our musical historian, 
but also makes us acquainted with an English 
eighteenth century amateur and votary of the 
Fiddle of singular ability and rare humility : 

" COLCHESTER, February 15, 1791. 
" To DR. BURNEY, 

" . . . And now, my dear friend, let's draw our stools to- 
gether, and have some fun. Is it possible we can help talking 
of Haydn first ? How do you like him ? What does he say ? 
What does he do ? What does he play upon ? How does 
he play ? . . . The papers say he has been bowed to by 
whole orchestras when he has appeared at the play-houses. 
Is he about anything in the way of composition ? Come, 
come ! I'll pester you no more with interrogations ; but 
trust to your generosity to gratify my ardent curiosity in your 
own way. I have just and I am ashamed to say but just 
sent for his ' Stabat Mater.' Fisin l told me some quartetts 
had, not long ago, been published by him. He has written 
so much that I cannot help fearing he will soon have written 
himself dry. If the resources of any human composer could 
be inexhaustible, I should suppose Haydn's would ; but as, 
after all, he is but mortal, I am afraid he must soon get to the 
bottom of his genius-box. My friend Mr. Tindal is come to 
settle (for the present at least) in this neighbourhood. He is 
going to succeed me in the curacy of Fordham. He plays 
the Fiddle well, the Harpsichord well, the Violoncello well. 
Now, sir, when I say ' well,' I can't be supposed to mean the 
wellness that one should predicate of a professor who makes 
the instrument his study ; but that he plays in a very 
ungentlemanlike manner, exactly in time and tune, with 
taste, accent, and meaning, and the true sense of what he 
plays ; and, upon the Violoncello, he has execution sufficient 
to play Boccherini's quintettes, at least what may be called 



1 James Fisin was born in Colchester ; was intimate with 
Dr. Burney, and well known as a Professor of Music. 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 437 

very decently. But ask Fisin, he will tell you about our 
Fiddling, and vouch for our decency at least. I saw in one 
of the public prints an insinuation that Haydn, upon his 
arrival in London, had detected some forgeries, some things 
published in his name that were not done by him. Is that 
true ? It does not seem very unlikely." 



Haydn left Vienna December 15, 1790, and 
arrived with Salomon in London on New Year's 
Day, 1791. The Rev. Thomas Twining's interro- 
gations addressed to Dr. Burney respecting him 
were therefore made but a few weeks after Haydn's 
first arrival in England. Between the months 01 
January and May much had been seen and heard of 
Haydn, information of which Dr. Burney gave to 
his friend, as seen in the following letter : 



" COLCHESTER, May 4, 1791. 
" To DR. BURNEY, 

u How good it was of you to gratify me with another 
canto of the f Haydniad ' ! It is all most interesting to me. 
I don't know anything any musical thing that would de- 
light me so much as to meet him in a snug quartett party, 
and hear his manner of playing his own music. If you can 
bring about such a thing while I am in town, either at 
Chelsea, or at Mr. Burney's, or at Mr. Salomon's, or I care 
not where if it were even in the Black Hole at Calcutta (if 
it is a good hole for music) I say, if by hook or crook you 
could manage such a thing, you should be my Magnus Apollo 
for the rest of your life. I mention Salomon because we are 
a little acquainted. He has twice asked me to call upon him, 
and I certainly will do it when I come to town. I want to 
hear more of his playing ; and I seem, from the little I have 
seen of him, to like the man. I know not how it is, but I 



438 THE VIOLIN 

really receive more musical pleasure from such private 
cameranious Fiddlings and singings, and keyed instrument 
playings, than from all the appret of public and crowded 
performances. 

u I have lately had a sort of Fiddle mania upon me, brought 
on by trying and comparing different Stainers and Cremonas, 
&c. I believe I have got possession of a sweet Stradivari, 
which I play upon with much more pleasure than my Stainer, 
partly because the tone is sweeter, mellower, rounder, and 
partly because the stop is longer. My Stainer is undersized, 
and on that account less valuable, though the tone is as 
bright, piercing, and full, as of any Stainer I ever heard. 
Yet, when I take it up after the Stradivari it sets my teeth on 
edge. The tone comes out plump, all at once. There is a 
comfortable reserve of tone in the Stradivari, and it bears 
pressure ; and you may draw upon it for almost as much tone 
as you please. I think I shall bring it to town with me, and 
then you shall hear it. 'Tis a battered, shattered, cracky, 
resinous old blackguard ; but if every bow that ever crossed 
its strings from its birth had been sugared instead of resined, 
more sweetness could not come out of its belly. Addio, and 
ever pardon my sins of infirmity. 

" Yours truly, 

u T T " 

GAINSBOROUGH AS A MUSICIAN. 

William Jackson, organist of Exeter Cathedral, 
was intimate with Gainsborough, and besides being 
a thorough musician, painted with ability. He was 
also the author of many essays. In one of these he 
makes us acquainted with the character of Gains- 
borough's musical abilities. He says, " In the early 
part of -my life I became acquainted with Thomas 
Gainsborough, the painter, and as his character 
was perhaps better known to me than to any other 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 439 

person, I will endeavour to divest myself of every 
partiality, and speak of him as he really was. 
Gainsborough's profession was painting, and music 
was his amusement yet, there were times when 
music seemed to be his employment, and painting 
his diversion. 

"When I first knew him he lived at Bath, where 
Giardini had been exhibiting his then unrivalled 
powers on the Violin. His excellent performance 
made Gainsborough enamoured of that instrument ; 
and conceiving, like the servant-maid in the Spec- 
tator, that the music lay in the Fiddle, he was 
frantic until he possessed the very instrument which 
had given him so much pleasure but seemed much 
surprised that the music of it remained behind with 
Giardini. He had scarcely recovered this shock 
(for it was a great one to him) when he heard Abel 
on the Viol da Gamba. The Violin was hung on 
the willow ; Abel's Viol da Gamba was purchased, 
and the house resounded with melodious thirds and 
fifths from ' morn to dewy eve ! ' Many an Adagio 
and many a Minuet were begun, but none com- 
pleted ; this was wonderful, as it was Abel's own 
instrument, and, therefore, ought to have produced 
Abel's own music ! 

" Fortunately my friend's passion had now a fresh 
object Fischer's Hautboy x but I do not recollect 

1 Fischer was a celebrated Oboe-player. He made his 
first appearance in London in 1768. Gainsborough painted 
two portraits of him, one of which is at Hampton Court. 



440 THE VIOLIN 

that he deprived Fischer of his instrument ; and 
though he procured a Hautboy, I never heard him 
make the least attempt on it. The next time I saw 
Gainsborough it was in the character of King 
David. He had heard a Harper at Bath the 
performer was soon Harpless and now Fischer, 
Abel, and Giardini were all forgotten there was 
nothing like chords and arpeggios ! He really 
stuck to the Harp long enough to play several airs 
with variations, and would nearly have exhausted 
all the pieces usually performed on an instrument 
incapable of modulation (this was not a pedal 
Harp), when another visit from Abel brought him 
back to the Viol da Gamba. He now saw the 
imperfection of sudden sounds that instantly die 
away if you wanted staccato, it was to be had by 
a proper management of the bow, and you might 
also have notes as long as you please. The Viol 
da Gamba is the only instrument, and Abel the 
prince of musicians ! This, and occasionally a little 
flirtation with the Fiddle, continued some years ; 
when, as ill-luck would have it, he heard Crosdill, 
but by some irregularity of conduct he neither took 
up nor bought the Violoncello. All his passion for 
the Bass was vented in descriptions of Crosdill's 
tone and bowing." 

Gainsborough's fondness for fresh instruments is 
alluded to by Philip Thicknesse, who says that 
during his residence at Bath, Gainsborough offered 
him one hundred guineas for a Viol da Gamba, 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 441 

dated 1612. His offer was declined, but it was 
ultimately agreed that he should paint a full-length 
portrait of Mr. Thicknesse for the Viol da Gamba. 
Gainsborough was delighted with the arrangement, 
and said " Keep me hungry; keep me hungry! 
and do not send the instrument until I have finished 
the picture." The Viol da Gamba was, however, 
sent the next morning, and the same day the artist 
stretched a canvas. He received a sitting, finished 
the head, rubbed in the dead colouring, &c., and 
then it was laid aside no more was said of it or 
done to it, and he eventually returned the Viol da 
Gamba. 

Jackson tells us that Gainsborough " disliked 
singing, particularly in parts. He detested reading ; 
but was so like Sterne in his letters, that, if it were 
not for an originality that could be copied from no 
one, it might be supposed that he had formed his 
style upon a close imitation of that author. He 
had as much pleasure in looking at a Violin as in 
hearing it. I have seen him for many minutes 
surveying, in silence, the perfections of an instru- 
ment, from the just proportion of the model and 
beauty of workmanship. His conversation was 
sprightly ; his favourite subjects were music and 
painting, which he treated in a manner peculiarly 
his own. He died with this expression ' We 

are all going to heaven, and Vandyke is of the 

> 
party. 



442 THE VIOLIN 

GARRICK AND CERVETTO. 

Cervetto, the famous Violoncello-player, occupied 
the post of principal Violoncello at Drury Lane for 
many years. His fame as a performer was almost 
matched by the celebrity of his nasal organ, the 
tuberosity of which often caused the audience in the 
gallery to exclaim, " Play up, Nosey ! " In Dibdin's 
"Musical Tour," 1788, we are told that "When 
Garrick returned from Italy, he prepared an address 
to the audience, which he delivered previous to the 
play he first appeared in. When he came upon the 
stage he was welcomed with three loud plaudits, 
each finishing with a huzza.. As soon as this 
unprecedented applause had subsided, he used 
every art, of which he was so completely master, 
to lull the tumult into a profound silence ; and just 
as all was hushed as death, and anxious expectation 
sat on every face, old Cervetto, who was better 
known by the name of ' Nosey,' anticipated the 
very first line of the address by aw a tremen- 
dous yawn. A convulsion of laughter ensued, and 
it was some minutes before the wished-for silence 
could be again restored. That, however, obtained, 
Garrick delivered his address in that happy, irresis- 
tible manner in which he was always sure to capti- 
vate his audience ; and he retired with applause, 
such as was never better given, nor ever more 
deserved. But the matter did not rest here ; the 
moment he came off the stage, he flew like lightning 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 443 

to the music-room, where he encountered Cervetto, 
and began to abuse him vociferously. ' Wha why 

you old scoundrel. You must be the most ' 

At length poor Cervetto said, ' Oh, Mr. Garrick ! 
vat is the matter vat I haf do ? Oh ! vat is 
it ? ' ' The matter ! Why you senseless idiot 

with no more brains than your Bass-Viol 

just at the a very moment I had played 
with the audience tickled them like a trout, 
and brought them to the most accommodating 
silence so pat to my purpose so perfect 
that it was, as one may say, a companion for 
Milton's visible darkness.' ' Indeed, Mr. Garrick, 
it vas no darkness.' 'Darkness! stupid fool 

but how should a man of my reading make 

himself understood by a Answer me was 

not the house very still ? ' ' Yes, sir, indeed- 
still as a mouse.' ' Well, then, just at that 
very moment did you not with your jaws ex- 
tended wide enough to swallow a sixpenny loaf 
yawn?' ' Sare, Mr. Garrick only if you 
please hear me von vord. It is alvay the vay 
it is, indeed, Mr. Garrick alvay the vay 
I go ven I haf the greatest rapture, Mr. 
Garrick.' The little great man's anger instantly 
cooled. The readiness of this Italian flattery 
operated exactly contrary to the last line of an 
epigram the honey was tasted, and the sting 
forgot." 



444 THE VIOLIN 

THE KING AND THE PLAYER. 

George the Third was frequently at Weymouth, 
and often strolled about the town unattended. 
On the day of Elliston's benefit (at which His 
Majesty had expressed his intention of being 
present) he had been enjoying one of his after- 
noon wanderings, when a shower of rain came 
on. Happening to be passing the theatre door, 
in he went. Finding no one about, he entered 
the Royal box, and seated himself in his chair. 
The dim daylight of the theatre and slight 
fatigue occasioned by his walk, induced drow- 
siness : His Majesty, in fact, fell into a doze, 
which ultimately resolved itself into a sound sleep. 
In the meantime Lord Townsend met Elliston, 
of whom he inquired if he had seen the King, 
as His Majesty had not been at the palace since 
his three o'clock dinner, it being then nearly five. 
Elliston being unable to give his lordship any 
information, Lord Townsend sought His Majesty 
in another direction, and the comedian made his 
way to the theatre, in order to superintend the 
necessary arrangements for the reception of 
his Royal patrons. Upon reaching the theatre, 
Elliston went at once to the King's box, and 
seeing a man fast asleep in His Majesty's chair, 
was about recalling him to his senses somewhat 
roughly, when, happily, he discovered who it 
was that had so unexpectedly taken possession 




ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 445 

of the Royal chair. What was to be done ? 
Elliston could not presume to wake His Majesty 
to approach him speak to him touch him 
impossible ! and yet something was necessary to 
be done, as it was time to light the theatre, and, 
what was of still more importance, to relieve the 
anxiety of the Queen and family. Elliston hit 
on the following expedient : Taking up a Violin 
from the orchestra he stepped into the pit, and 
placing himself beneath his exalted guest, struck 
up dolcemente 



f fl I I I 'T~l Istq: = T = T~\ -fr^f 1 ^ 

God save our no - ble King ! Long live our gra-cious King ! 

The expedient produced the desired effect. The 
sleeper was loosened from the spell which bound 
him. Awakened, His Majesty stared at the 
comedian full in the face, ejaculated, " Hey, hey, 
hey ! what, what oh, yes ! I see Elliston 
ha, ha ! Rain came on took a seat took a nap. 
What's o'clock?" "Nearly six, your Majesty." 
"Say I'm here. Stay, stay! This wig won't 
do eh, eh ! Don't keep the people waiting- 
light up ; light up ; let them in fast asleep. 
Play well to-night, Elliston." The theatre was 
illuminated ; messengers were despatched to the 
Royal party, which, having arrived in due course, 
Elliston quitted the side of the affable Monarch, 



446 THE VIOLIN 

and prepared himself for his part in the per- 
formance. 



SIR WALTER SCOTT ON MUSIC AND FIDDLES. 

" I do not know and cannot utter," said Sir 
Walter, " a note of music ; and complicated 
harmony seems to me a babble of confused, 
though pleasing sounds ; yet simple melodies, 
especially if connected with words and ideas, 
have as much effect on me as on most people. 
I cannot bear a voice that has no more life in 
it than a pianoforte or bugle-horn. There is in 
almost all the fine arts a something of soul and 
spirit, which, like the vital principle in man, 
defies the research of the most critical anatomist. 
You feel where it is not, yet you cannot describe 
what it is you want." Sir Joshua, or some other 
great painter, was looking at a picture on which 
much pains had been bestowed. " Why yes," 
he said, in a hesitating manner ; "it is very clever 
very well done. Can't find fault, but it wants 
something it wants it wants d n me, it wants 
that ! " throwing his hand over his head, and 
snapping his fingers. In talking of his ignorance 
of music, Scott said he had once been employed 
in a case where a purchaser of a Fiddle had 
been imposed on as to its value. He found it 
necessary to prepare himself by reading all about 
Fiddles in the encyclopaedias, &c., and having 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 447 

got the names of Stradivari, Amati, &c., glibly 
on his tongue, got swimmingly through his case. 
Not long after this, dining at the Duke of Hamil- 
ton's, he found himself left alone after dinner 
with the Duke, who had but two subjects he 
could talk of hunting and music. Having ex- 
hausted hunting, Scott thought he would bring 
forward his lately acquired learning in Fiddles, 
upon which the Duke grew quite animated, and 
immediately whispered some orders to the butler, 
in consequence of which there soon entered the 
room about half-a-dozen tall servants, all in red, 
each bearing a Fiddle case, and Scott found his 
knowledge brought to no less a test than that 
of telling by the tones of each Fiddle, as the 
Duke played it, by what artist it was made. " By 
guessing and management," said he, " I got on 
pretty well, till we were, to my great relief, 
summoned to coffee." l 

I have frequently heard of the Duke's passion 
for Violins, and also that he had a great number 
of them at Hamilton Palace. Among these 
instruments there appears to have been a singu- 
larly perfect Tenor by the brothers Amati. 
Signer Piatti has often spoken to me of having 
seen this instrument several years since in the 
possession of the family. The Hamilton collection 
of Fiddles was doubtless dispersed long before 
the rare MSS., the Beckford Library, the inlaid 
1 Lockhart's " Life of Sir Walter Scott." 



448 THE VIOLIN 

cabinets, and other treasures which served to make 
Hamilton Palace renowned throughout the world 
of art and letters. 

Returning to the subject of Sir Walter Scott's 
references to music, it will be seen that his bar- 
risters possess among their gentlemanly embellish- 
ments a knowledge of stringed instruments. Who 
can forget that the young Templar, Master 
Lowestoffe (" Fortunes of Nigel," chap. xvi. 
138) "performed sundry tunes on the Fiddle 
and French Horn " in Alsatia ; and that Counsellor 
Pleydell, on the eventful night, in " Guy Manner- 
ing" (chap. xlix. 255), being a "member of 
the gentlemen's concert in Edinburgh," was 
performing some of Scarlatti's sonatas with great 
brilliancy upon the Violoncello to Julia's accom- 
paniment upon the harpsichord ? 

A CINDERELLA VIOLONCELLO. 

A somewhat curious change in the ownership 
of a Violoncello occurred many years since. 
My father (Mr. John Hart) was walking along 
Oxford Street, when he heard the sounds of a 
Violoncello, a Violin, and a Cornet, which were 
being played in a side street. His curiosity 
being excited, he became one of the group of 
listeners. The appearance of the Violoncello 
greatly pleased him ; it was covered with a 
thick coat of resin and dirt, but its author was 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 449 

clearly defined nevertheless. When the players 
had concluded their performance, Mr. Hart asked 
the wandering Violoncellist if he was disposed 
to sell his instrument. " I have no objection, 
if I can get enough to buy another and some- 
thing over," was the answer. The terms not 
being insurmountable, a bargain was struck, and 
the dealer in Fiddles walked away, taking his 
newly-acquired purchase under his arm. The 
itinerant trio, having become a duet, gave up 
work for that day. 

Reaching home with his charge, Mr. Hart 
was in the act of removing the accumulated 
dirt of many a hard day's work from the Violon- 
cello, when Robert Lindley entered, and asked 
what might be the parentage of the instrument 
about which so much pains were being taken. 
" A Forster," was the reply ; and at the same time 
the circumstances of the purchase were related. 
Lindley was much amused, and expressed a 
wish to possess the rescued instrument, though 
it had been much injured. The price was 
agreed upon, and the Violoncello thus passed 
from the most humble to the most exalted player 
in one day. 

A STOLEN " STRAD." 

It has often been remarked that to steal a 
valuable Violin is as hazardous as to steal a 

GG 



450 THE VIOLIN 

child ; its identity is equally impregnable, in 
fact, cannot be disguised, save at the price of 
entire demolition. To use a paradox, Violins, 
like people, are all alike, yet none are alike. 
The indelible personality of the best Violins has 
been a powerful agent in the cause of morality, 
and has deterred many from attempting to steal 
them. We have, however, instances of undis- 
covered robberies of valuable instruments, and 
notably that of the fine Stradivari which belonged 
to a well-known amateur, an attache at the 
British Embassy at St. Petersburg. The Violin 
in question was numbered with the Plowden 
collection. I disposed of it to the amateur 
above mentioned in 1868 ; it was a magnifi- 
cent Violin, date 1709, in the highest state 
of preservation. In the year 1869 the owner 
of it was appointed to the Embassy at St. 
Petersburg, and removed thither. He was a 
passionate lover of the Violin, and an excellent 
player. One evening he was playing at a 
musical party. After he had finished he placed 
his " Strad " in its case as usual, which he 
closed, without locking it. The next day he 
was amusing himself with a parrot, which bit 
him on the lip ; the wound appeared very 
unimportant, but exposure to the cold brought 
on malignant abscess, and he sank and died. 
In due course his representatives arrived in 
St. Petersburg, and took charge of his pro- 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 451 

perty, which was brought to England. Some 
twelve months afterwards a relative (Mr. Andrew 
Fountaine, of Narford), who took much interest 
in valuable ' Violins, was visiting the family 
of the deceased gentleman and asjsed to be 
allowed to see the Stradivari, 1709. The 
case was sent for and duly opened. When the 
Violin was handed to the visitor he remarked 
there must be some mistake, and suggested that 
the wrong case had been brought, the instrument 
he held having no resemblance whatever to the 
Stradivari, and not being worth a sovereign. 
Inquiries were set on foot, and it was satisfactorily 
proved that the case had never been opened 
since it had been brought to England ; neither 
had it left the custody of the late owner's nearest 
relative, who had kept it secured in a chest. 
The next day after the occurrence of the 
event related above, I was communicated with, 
and asked if I could recognise the Stradivari in 
question. It is unnecessary to record my answer. 
I might, with an equivalent amount of reason, 
have been asked if I should know my own child. 
The double case was formally opened, and the 
Violin described above was taken out. "Is 
that the Stradivari ? " I scarcely knew for the 
moment whether my interrogator was in earnest, 
so ridiculous was the question. It remains only 
to be said that the Russian authorities were 
memorialised and furnished by me with a full 



452 THE VIOLIN 

description of the instrument ; but to this 
moment its whereabouts has never been dis- 
covered. 



THE MISSING SCROLL. 

It has often happened that portions of valuable 
instruments, detached from the original whole, 
have been once more recovered and reinstated 
in their proper place. The following is an 
amusing instance of this. 

A well-known amateur, belonging to the gene- 
ration now fast passing away, was the fortunate 
possessor of a Stradivari Violin, which he had 
occasion to take to the Fiddle doctor for an 
operation quite unknown to the students 
of the Royal College of Surgeons, but 
well understood by the members of the fra- 
ternity to which I have the honour to belong, 
namely, decapitation. This, in the Fiddle language, 
means the removal of the old neck, and the 
splicing of a brand-new one in its place. It is 
an operation wholly unattended with the horrors 
of human surgery. Again and again a time was 
appointed for the completion of this delicate 
insertion, but in vain it was a case of hope 
deferred. The owner of the Stradivari becoming 
wearied with this state of things, determined 
to carry off his cherished instrument in its dis- 
membered condition. Placing the several portions 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 453 

in paper, he left the Fiddle doctor's establishment, 
considerably annoyed and excited. Upon reaching 
his home his recent ebullition of temper had 
entirely passed away, and he calmly set himself 
to open the parcel containing his dissected 
" Strad," when, to his utter dismay, he failed 
to find its scroll. The anguish he suffered may 
be readily conceived by the lover of Fiddles. 
Away he started in search of his Fiddle's head, 
dead to all around him but the sense of his loss; 
he demanded of every one he met whether they 
had by chance picked up the head of a Fiddle. 
The answers were all in the negative ; and 
many were the looks of astonishment caused 
by the strange nature of the question and the 
bewildered appearance of the questioner. At 
length he arrived at the house of the Fiddle 
doctor, whose want of punctuality had brought 
about the misfortune. Here was his forlorn 
hope ! He might possibly have forgotten to put 
the scroll into the parcel. His doubts were soon 
at rest ; the scroll had been taken with the 
other parts of the instrument. Completely over- 
come with sorrow and vexation, he knew not 
how to endeavour to recover his loss. He ulti- 
mately decided to offer a reward of five pounds 
and to await the result as contentedly as he 
could. 

A few hours after the dejected owner of the 
Violin had left the shop of the Fiddle doctor, 



454 THE VIOLIN 

an old woman, the keeper of an apple stall in 
the neighbourhood, entered and offered for sale 
a Fiddle-head. The healer of Violins, taking it 
into his hands, was agreeably astonished to 
recognise in it the missing headpiece, and eagerly 
demanded of the seller whence she had obtained 
it, and what might be its price. " Picked it up 
in the gutter," she answered ; and two shillings 
was the modest value she set upon her find. 
Without a moment's hesitation the money was 
handed to the vendor of Ribston pippins, and 
away she trudged in high glee at the result 
of -her good luck. The Fiddle ^Esculapius, 
equally gleeful at the course of events, resolved 
to avail himself of the opportunity afforded him 
of gratifying a little harmless revenge upon the 
fidgety amateur's haste in removing the " Strad " 
before the alterations had been completed. He 
therefore determined to keep the fact of the 
discovery to himself for a short time. Advertise- 
ments multiplied, and the reward rapidly rose 
to twenty guineas. Having satisfied his revengeful 
feelings, the repairer duly made known the dis- 
covery of the missing scroll, to the intense 
gratification of its owner. Finally, the repairer 
refused to accept any portion of the reward 
upon one condition, viz., that he was allowed 
to complete his work a condition readily con- 
ceded. 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 455 

ANOTHER WANDERING SCROLL. 

Among the collection of valuable Violins be- 
longing to the late Mr. James Coding, was a 
Stradivari Violin, dated 1710, which had been 
deprived of its original scroll, and bore a sup- 
posititious figure-head by David Tecchler, owing 
to a piece of vandalism perpetrated by an eccentric 
amateur. The original scroll had found its way 
to an Italian Violin of some merit, the value 
of which was considerably enhanced by the newly- 
acquired headpiece, which gave to the whole 
instrument an air of importance- to which it 
could lay no claim till it carried on its shoulders 
a head belonging to the aristocracy of Fiddles. 
During a period of about twenty years this 
mongrel Fiddle became the property of as many 
owners, and ultimately fell into my hands. 
Leaving this instrument, we will follow the history 
of the Stradivari, date 1710. At the dispersion 
of Mr. Coding's collection by Messrs. Christie 
and Manson, in the year 1857, a well-known 
amateur purchased the Violin for the sum of 
seventy pounds, the loss of its scroll preventing 
the realisation of a higher figure. Sixteen years 
after this event the purchaser applied to me for 
a Stradivari scroll, that he might make his 
instrument complete. The mongrel Violin de- 
scribed above being in my possession, decapitation 
was duly performed, and the Stradivari received 



456 THE VIOLIN 

its head again. Here was a fortuitous course 
of circumstances ! This exchange of heads took 
place without my being at all- aware that the 
" Strad " scroll had returned to its original body ; 
but on my mentioning the circumstance to my 
father, he informed me, to my astonishment and 
delight, that if the head of the mongrel Fiddle 
had been placed on the Stradivari, date 1710, 
from the Coding collection, it was now, as the 
effect of recent transmigration, on its own legiti- 
mate body. 

A MONTAGNANA INSTRUMENf SHOT THROUGH THE 
BODY IN THE REVOLUTION OF 1848. 

An enthusiastic amateur was playing the 
Violin in a house in one of the leading thorough- 
fares in Paris at the outbreak of the Revolution 
in 1848. His ardour was so great that the 
cannonading failed to interrupt him in his 
pleasurable pursuit ; he fiddled on, regardless 
of all about him, as Nero is said to have done 
when his capital was in flames, and even left 
the window of his apartment open. Presently 
a whizzing noise, terminating in a thud above 
his head, arrested his attention. Upon his looking 
up he saw the mark of a bullet in the ceiling. 
Aroused to a sense of his danger, he closed the 
windows. Being about to put his Montagnana 
into its case, his astonishment may be imagined 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 457 

when he discovered a hole through the upper 
side, and a corresponding chink in the belly, 
both as sharply cut as though a centre-bit had 
done the work. His Violin bore witness to 
his miraculous escape ; the bullet lodged in the 
ceiling had taken his Montagnana in its course. 
The instrument referred to in this anecdote has 
been in my possession more than once. 

FIDDLE MARKS AND THE CREDULOUS DABBLERS. 

It is said that a drowning man will clutch at 
a straw ; the truth of the remark applies to 
the half-informed in Fiddle connoisseurship. It 
is very amusing to note the pile of nothings 
that these persons heap up under the name of 
" guiding points " in relation to Fiddles. I will 
endeavour to call to mind a few of these. I will 
begin with those little pegs seen on the backs of 
Violins near the button, and at the bottom ; the 
position of these airy nothings without habitation 
or name " is deemed indisputable evidence of 
certain makers' handicraft." One is supposed to 
have put his pegs to the right, another to the 
left ; another used three, four, and so on. I 
have frequently heard this remark " Oh, it cannot 
be a Stradivari, because the pegs are wrong ! " 

The purfling also forms an important item in 
the collection of landmarks ; certain makers are 
supposed to have invariably used one kind of pur- 



458 THE VIOLIN 

fling, no variation being allowed for width or 
material adopted. Original instruments are pro- 
nounced spurious and spurious original by this test. 
All Fiddles purfled with whalebone are dubbed 
"Jacobs," and no other maker is credited with 
using such purfling. 

The back of a Violin is another very important 
item with these individuals. Particular makers 
are supposed to have only made whole backs, 
others double backs ; others again are thought to 
be known only by the markings of the wood. 
There is another crotchet to be mentioned : some 
will tell you they will inform you who made 
your Violin by taking the belly off, and examining 
the shape of the blocks and linings. Rest assured 
if the maker cannot be seen outside, he will 
never reveal himself in the inner consciousness of 
a Fiddle. Measurement is another certain guiding 
point with these dabblers ; the measuring tape 
is produced and the instrument condemned if it 
does not tally with their erroneous theory. 

" GUARNERI " AT A DISCOUNT. 

With what tenacity do persons often cling to 
the fond belief that undoubted Raffaeles, Cinque 
Cento bronzes, dainty bits of Josiah Wedgwood's 
ware, and old Cremonas, are exposed for sale 
in the windows of dealers in unredeemed pledges, 
brokers' shops, and divers other emporiums! It is 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 459 

the firm conviction of these amiable persons that 
scores of gems unknown are awaiting in such 
cosy lurking-places the recognition of the educated 
eye for their immediate deliverance to the light 
of day. 

The quasi bric-a-brac portion of the general 
dealer's stock is dexterously arrayed in his window, 
and not allowed to take up a prominent position 
among the wares displayed. To expose treasures 
would be a glaring act of indiscretion, inasmuch 
as it would tend to the belief that the proprietor 
was perfectly cognisant of the value of his goods, 
whereas he is imagined by the hypothesis to be 
profoundly ignorant on the subject. Pictures, 
bronzes, china, and Fiddles, with their extremely 
modest prices attached, lie half hidden behind a 
mountain of goods of a diametrically opposite 
nature. There they may rest for days, nay, weeks, 
before the individual with the educated eye, for 
the good of all men, detects them. Sooner or 
later, however, he makes his appearance, and peers 
into every nook of the window, shading his eyes 
with his hands. Something within arrests his 
attention ; his nose gets flattened against the glass 
in his eagerness to get near the object. He enters 
the' establishment, and asks to be allowed to look 
at an article quite different from the one he has 
been so intent upon ; his object being that the 
dealer may not awaken to a sense of the coveted 
article's value by a stranger seeming to be in- 



460 THE VIOLIN 

terested in it. After examining the decoy bird, 
he returns it, and carelessly asks to look at the 
article. Whatever the value set upon it may be, 
he tenders exactly the half, the matter being 
usually settled by what is technically known as 
"splitting the difference." Delighted with his 
purchase, he carries it home, and persuades his 
friends he has got to the blind side of the dealer, 
and is in possession of the real thing for the fiftieth 
part of what others give for it. He proceeds to 
enlighten his friends on the subject, telling them 
to follow his example, which they invariably do. 

Scarcely a day passes without my hearing of a 
Cremona having been secured in the manner I 
.have attempted to describe. My experience, how- 
ever, teaches me that the whole thing is a delusion, 
and that the thoroughbred Cremona does not fall 
away from the companionship of its equals, once 
in the space of a lifetime, and that when this does 
happen, the instrument rarely falls to the bargain- 
hunter. 

The following exceptional incident will, I hope, 
not be found wanting in interest as bearing on 
this theme. A votary of the Violin purchased 
an old Fiddle for some two or three pounds from 
a general dealer in musical instruments in his 
neighbourhood. He was well satisfied with his 
acquisition ; and after subjecting it to a course 
of judicious regulation, so great were the improve- 
ments effected that the vendor regretted having 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 461 

sold it for such a trifling sum, and the more so 
when it was whispered about that the instrument 
was a veritable Amati a report, by the way, 
very far wide of the mark, as it was simply an 
old Tyrolean copy. 

Some little time after the occurrence related, 
the lover of Violins heard that the same instru- 
ment-seller from whom he purchased the imagined 
Amati, had secured a job lot of some half-dozen 
old Fiddles, the remnant of an old London music- 
seller's stock, and that he was offering them for 
sale. Our hero decided to pay another visit, 
and judge of the merits of the new wares, with 
a view to a second investment. Upon presenting 
himself to the local seller of Violins, he was at 
once informed that if he selected any instrument 
from the lot, he must be prepared to pay 10, 
the dealer having no intention of again committing 
his former error in selling a Cremona for some 
forty shillings. Upon this understanding the 
visitor proceeded to examine the little stock, 
which he found in a very disordered condition 
bridgeless, stringless, and dusty. Among the 
whole tribe, however, was a Violin which seemed 
to elbow its way to the front of the group, and 
clamour for the attention of which it appeared 
to deem itself worthy. Unable to resist its 
seeming appeal, the intending purchaser decided 
to remove it from the atmosphere of its com- 
panions, and begged that he might be permitted to 



462 THE VIOLIN 

take the importuning Fiddle and string it in order 
to test its qualities. His request being acceded 
to, he carried it away. Upon reaching home, he 
took it from its case, and gently removed the 
dust of years. The varnish appeared to him as 
something very different from any he had ever seen 
before on a Violin ; and being an artist by pro- 
fession, qualities of colours were pretty well under- 
stood by him. With the Violin poised on his 
knee, somewhat after the manner seen in the 
well-known picture of Stradivari in his workshop, 
he thus communed with himself: "I have never 
seen the much-spoken-of Cremonese varnish, but 
if this instrument has it not, its lustre must indeed 
be more wondrous than my imagination has 
painted." After again and again examining the 
Violin, he retired to rest, but not to sleep. The 
Fiddle persisted in dodging him whichever-- way 
he turned on his couch. At the dawn of day- 
five o'clock he was up, with the Fiddle again 
on his knee, thinking he might have been labour- 
ing under some infatuation the night before 
which the light of day might dispel. Convinced 
he was under no such delusion, he soon made for 
the music-seller's establishment, whom he delighted 
by paying the price demanded for the Violin. 
It was now time, he felt, to obtain professional 
advice on the matter ; in due course he paid me 
a visit. Upon his opening the case I was unable 
to restrain my feelings of surprise, and demanded 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 463 

if he had any idea of the value of the 
Violin. "None whatever," he answered. With- 
out, troubling the reader further, I informed him 
that his Violin was an undoubted Giuseppe 
Guarneri, of considerable value. He then re- 
counted the circumstances attending its purchase, 
with which the reader is familiar. 



DOMENICO DRAGONETTI HIS GASPARO DA SAlA 

Signor Dragonetti succeeded Berini as primo 
basso in the orchestra of the chapel belonging to 
the monastery of San Marco, Venice, in his 
eighteenth year. The procurators of the monas- 
tery, wishing to show their high appreciation 
of his worth, presented the youthful player with 
a magnificent Contra- Bass, by Gasparo da Salo, 
which had been made expressly for the chapel 
orchestra of the convent of St. Peter, by the 
famous Brescian maker. 

Upon an eventful night, the inmates of the 
monastery retired to rest, when they were 
awakened by deep rumbling and surging sounds. 
Unable to find repose while these noises rent 
the air, they decided to visit the chapel ; and the 
nearer they got to it the louder the sounds became. 
Regarding each other with looks of mingled fear 
and curiosity, they reached the chapel, opened 
the door, and there stood the innocent cause of 
their fright, Domenico Dragonetti, immersed in 



464 THE VIOLIN 

the performance of some gigantic passage, of a 
range extending from the nut to the bridge, on 
his newly-acquired Gasparo. The monks stood 
regarding the performer in amazement, possibly 
mistaking him for a second appearance of the 
original of Tartini's "Sonata del Diavolo," his 
Satanic Majesty having substituted the Contra- 
Basso for the Violin. Upon this instrument 
Dragonetti played at his chief concert engagements, 
and though frequently importuned to sell it by 
his numerous admirers, declined to do so ; in fact, 
though for the last few years of his life he gave 
up public performance, he resolutely refused most 
tempting offers for his treasure ^800, to use an 
auctioneer's phrase, "having been offered in two 
places," and respectfully declined. In his youthful 
days he decided that his cherished Gasparo should 
return to the place from whence he obtained 
it, the Monastery of San Marco, and this wish 
was accordingly fulfilled by his executors in the 
year 1846. The occasion was one of much 
interest ; it was felt by Dragonetti's friends and 
admirers that to consign the instrument upon 
which ' he had so often astonished and delighted 
them with the magic tones he drew from it, to 
the care of those who possibly knew nothing ol 
its merits, was matter for regret. 

Being desirous of furnishing the reader with all 
the information possible relative to Signer Drago- 
netti's instrument I communicated with Mr. 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 465 

Samuel Appleby, who was his legal adviser, and 
probably better acquainted with him than any 
other person in this country. He very kindly 
sent me the following particulars, which are 
interesting : 

" BRIGHTON, July 2, 1875. 

" MY DEAR SIR, 

"Your letter of yesterday needs no apology, 
as it will afford me pleasure at any time to give 
you any information in my power respecting the 
late Signer Dragonetti, having known him well 
from 1796 to his death. 

"His celebrated Gasparo da Salo instrument, 
or Contra- Basso, was left by his will to the Fabbri- 
cieri (or churchwardens) for the time being of the 
Church of St. Mark's, at Venice, to be played upon 
only on festivals and grand occasions. I was 
present on one of such festivals, which lasted three 
days, in July, 1852. I then saw the Basso, which 
was played on in Orchestra No. i, there having 
been two bands for which music had been com- 
posed expressly. 

"In April, 1875, being again in Venice, I in- 
quired from the Verger of St. Mark's if Dragonetti's 
Violone was in the church, and I could see it. The 
reply was in the affirmative, but as the Fabbricieri 
had the care of the instrument, under lock and key, 
it would be necessary to see them and get their 
consent for its production. As this would cause me 

HH 



466 THE VIOLIN 

some little trouble, I left Venice without carrying 
out my intention. 

" Dragonetti by his will left me his Amati Double- 
Bass, which is now in this house, and I believe 
the only one of that make in England, and con- 
sequently highly prized by 

"Yours truly, 

" SAMUEL APPLEBY. 
"Mr. Hart." 

THE BETTS STRADIVARI. 

The Bibliophile tells us of Caxton, Aldine, and 
Baskerville editions having been exposed for sale 
by itinerant booksellers, men who in opening their 
umbrellas opened their shops. Collectors of 
pictures, china, and Fiddles, have each their won- 
drous tales to tell of bygone bargains, which are 
but the echoes of that of the Bibliophile. It is 
doubtful, however, were we to search throughout 
the curiosities of art sales, whether we should dis- 
cover such a bargain as Mr. Betts secured, when 
he purchased the magnificent Stradivari which 
bears his name, for twenty shillings. About half 
a century since, this instrument was taken to the 
shop of Messrs. Betts, the well-known English 
Violin-makers in the old Royal Exchange, and 
disposed of for the trivial sum above-mentioned. 
Doubtless its owner believed he was selling a brand- 
new copy, instead of a " Stradivari" made in 1704, 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 467 

in a state of perfection. Frequently importuned to 
sell the instrument, Mr. Betts persistently declined, 
though it is recorded in Sandys and Foster's work 
on the Violin, that five hundred guineas were ten- 
dered more than once, which in those days must 
have been a tempting offer indeed! Under the 
will of Mr. Betts it passed to his family, who for 
years retained possession of it. 

About the year 1858 it became the property of 
M. Vuillaume, of Paris, from whom it was purchased 
by M. Wilmotte, of Antwerp. Several years later 
it passed to Mr. C. G. Meier, who had waited 
patiently for years to become its owner. The loving 
care which this admirer of Cremonese Violins be- 
stowed upon it was such, that he would scarcely 
permit any person to handle it. From Mr. Meier 
it passed into my possession in the year 1878, which 
change of ownership brought forth the following 
interesting particulars from the pen of the late 
Charles Reade, the novelist and lover of Fiddles : 

"THE BETTS STRADIVARI. 

" To the Editor of the ' Globe.' 

" SIR, As you have devoted a paragraph to 
this Violin, which it well deserves, permit me to 
add a fact which may be interesting to amateurs, 
and to Mr George Hart, the late purchaser. M. 
Vuillaume, who could not speak English, was 
always assisted in his London purchases by the 



4 68 THE VIOLIN 

late John Lott, an excellent workman, and a good 
judge of old Violins. 1 The day after this particular 
purchase, Lott came to Vuillaume, by order, to open 
the Violin. He did so in the sitting-room whilst 
Vuillaume was dressing. Lott's first words were, 
'Why, it has never been opened!' His next, 
1 Here's the original bass-bar.' Thereupon out 
went M. Vuillaume, half-dressed, and the pair 
gloated over a rare sight, a Stradivari Violin, the 
interior of which was intact from the maker's hands. 
Mr. Lott described the bass-bar to me. It was 
very low and very short, and quite unequal to 
support the tension of the strings at our concert 
pitch, so that the true tone of this Violin can 
never have been heard in England before it fell 
into Vuillaume's hands. I have known this Violin 
forty years. It is wonderfully preserved. There is 
no wear on the belly except the chin-mark ; in 
the centre of the back a very little, just enough to 
give light and shade. The corners appear long 
for the epoch, but only because they have not been 
worn down. As far as the work goes, you may 
know from this instrument how a brand-new 
Stradivari Violin looked. Eight hundred guineas 
seems a long price for a dealer to give : but after 
all, here is a Violin, a picture, and a miracle all 
in one ; and big diamonds increase in number- ; 
but these spoils of time are limited for ever now, 

1 The hero of Mr. Read's " Jack of All Trades, a Matter- 
of-fact Romance," 



469 

and, indeed, can only decrease by shipwreck, 
accident, and the tooth of time. I am, your 
obedient servant, 

" CHARLES READE. 

" 19, ALBERT GATE, May 9, 1878." 

LEIGH HUNT ON PAGANINI. 

" ' I projected,' says Leigh Hunt, 'a poem to be 
called "A Day with the Reader." I proposed to 
invite the reader to breakfast, dine and sup with me, 
partly at home, and partly at a country inn, to vary 
the circumstances. It was to be written both 
gravely and gaily ; in an exalted, or in a lowly 
strain, according to the topics of which it treated. 
The fragment on Paganini was a part of the 
exordium : 

a So played of late to every passing thought, 
With finest change (might I but half as well 
So write !) the pale magician of the bow," &c. 

I wished to write in the same manner, because 
Paganini with his Violin could move both the tears 
and the laughter of his audience, and (as I have 
described him doing in the verses) would now give 
you the notes of birds in trees, and even hens 
feeding in a farmyard (which was a corner into 
which I meant to take my companion), and 
now melt you into grief and pity, or mystify 
you with witchcraft, or put you into a state of 



470 THE VIOLIN 

lofty triumph like a conqueror. The phrase of 
smiting the chord 

"He smote; and clinging to the serious chords 
With godlike ravishment," &c. 

was no classical commonplace ; nor, in respect to 
impression on the mind, was it exaggeration to say, 
that from a single chord he would fetch out 

"The voice of quires, and weight 
Of the built^organ." 

Paganini, the first time I saw and heard him, and 
the first time he struck a note, seemed literally to 
strike it to give it. a blow. The house was so 
crammed, that being among the squeezers in the 
standing-room at the side of the pit, I happened to 
catch the first glance of his face through the arm 
a-kimbo of a man who was perched up before me, 
which made a kind of frame for it ; and there on the 
stage, in that frame, as through a perspective glass, 
were the face, bust, and the raised hand of the 
wonderful musician, with the instrument at his chin, 
just going to commence, and looking exactly as I 
have described him. 

" His hand 

Loading the air with dumb expectancy 
Suspended, ere it fell, a nation's breath. 

He smote; and clinging to the serious chords 
With godlike ravishment, drew forth a breath 
So deep, so strong, so fervid, thick with love 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 471 

Blissful, yet laden as with twenty prayers, 
That Juno yearned with no diviner soul, 
To the first burthen of the lips of Jove. 

Th' exceeding mystery of the loveliness 
Sadden'd delight ; and with his mournful look 
Dreary and gaunt, hanging his pallid face 
'Twixt his dark flowing locks, he almost seemed 
Too feeble, or, to melancholy eyes, 
One that has parted with his soul for pride, 
And in the sable secret lived forlorn." 

" ' To show the depth and identicalness of the 
impression which he made upon everybody, foreign 
or native, an Italian who stood near me said to him- 
self, after a sigh," O Dio ! " and this had not been said 
long when another person, in the same manner, 
uttered " O Christ ! " Musicians pressed forward 
from behind the scenes to get as close to him as 
possible ; and they could not sleep at night for 
thinking of him.' " Timbs's Anecdote Biography. 

THACKERAY ON ORCHESTRAL MUSIC. 

" I wish I were a poet ; you should have a 
description of all this in verse, and welcome. But 
if I were a musician ! Let us see what we should 
do as musicians. First, you should hear the distant 
sound of a bugle, which sound should float away; 
that is one of the heralds of the morning, flying 
southward. Then another should issue from the 
eastern gates ; and now the grand reveille should 
grow, sweep past your ears (like the wind aforesaid), 
go on, dying as it goes. When, as it dies, my 



472 THE VIOLIN 

stringed instruments come in. These to the left of 
the orchestra break into a soft slow movement, the 
music swaying drowsily from side to side, as it were, 
with a noise like the rustling of boughs. It must 
not be much of a noise, however, for my stringed 
instruments to the right have begun the very song 
of the morning. The bows tremble upon the strings, 
like the limbs of a dancer, who, a-tiptoe, prepares to 
bound into her ecstasy of motion. Away ! The 
song soars into the air as if it had the wings of a 
kite. Here swooping, there swooping, wheeling 
upward, falling suddenly, checked, poised for a 
moment on quivering wings, and again away. It is 
waltz-time, and you hear the Hours dancing to it. 
Then the horns. Their melody overflows into the 
air richly, like honey of Hybla ; it wafts down in lazy 
gusts, like the scent of the thyme from that hill. 
So my stringed instruments to the left cease 
rustling ; listen a little while ; catch the music of 
those others, and follow it. Now for the rising of 
the lark ! Henceforward it is a chorus, and he is 
the leader thereof. Heaven and earth agree to 
follow him. I have a part for the brooks their 
notes drop, drop, drop, like his : for the woods 
they sob like him. At length, nothing remains but 
to blow the Hautboys ; and just as the chorus 
arrives at its fulness, they come maundering in. 
They have a sweet old blundering ' cow song ' to 
themselves a silly thing, made of the echoes of all 
pastoral sounds. There's a warbling waggoner in 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 473 

it, and his team jingling their bells. There's a 
shepherd driving his flock from the fold, bleating ; 
and the lowing of cattle. Down falls the lark like a 
stone ; it is time he looked for grubs. Then the 
Hautboys go out, gradually ; for the waggoner is 
far on his road to market ; sheep cease to bleat and 
cattle to low, one by one ; they are on their grazing 
ground, and the business of the day is begun. Last 
of all, the heavenly music sweeps away to waken 
more westering lands, over the Atlantic and its 
whitening sails." "An Essay without End'' 

ADDISON ON THE PERSONIFICATION OF THE LEADING 
INSTRUMENT. 

In the pages of the Tatler (April, 1710), Addison 
with much ingenuity and humour personifies certain 
musical instruments. He says : "I have often 
imagined to myself that different talents in dis- 
course might be shadowed out after the same 
manner by different kinds of music ; and that the 
several conversable parts of mankind in this great 
city might be cast into proper characters and divi- 
sions, as they resemble several instruments that are 
in use among the masters of harmony. Of these, 
therefore, in their order ; and first of the Drum. 

" Your Drums are the blusterers in conversation, 
that with a loud laugh, unnatural mirth, and a 
torrent of noise, domineer in public assemblies ; 
overbear men of sense ; stun their companions ; and 



474 THE VIOLIN 

fill the place they are in with a rattling sound, that 
hath seldom any wit, humour, or good breeding in 
it. I need not observe that the emptiness of the 
Drum very much contributes to its noise. 

" The Lute is a character directly opposite to the 
Drum, that sounds very finely by itself. A Lute is 
seldom heard in a company of more than five, 
whereas a Drum will show itself to advantage in 
an assembly of five hundred. The Lutenists, 
therefore, are men of a fine genius, uncommon 
reflection, great affability, and esteemed chiefly by 
persons of a good taste, who are the only proper 
judges of so delightful and soft a melody. 

"Violins are the lively, forward, importunate 
wits, that distinguish themselves by the flourishes 
of imagination, sharpness of repartee, glances of 
satire, and bear away the upper part in every 
consort. I cannot but observe, that when a man is 
not disposed to hear music, there is not a more 
disagreeable sound in harmony than that of a 
Violin. 

" The/e is another musical instrument, which is 
more frequent in this nation than any other ; I 
mean your Bass- Viol, which grumbles in the bottom 
of the consort, and with a surly masculine sound 
strengthens the harmony and tempers the sweetness 
of the several instruments that play along with it. 
The Bass-Viol is an instrument of a quite different 
nature to the Trumpet, and may signify men of 
rough sense and unpolished parts, who do not love 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 475 

to hear themselves talk, but sometimes break out 
with an agreeable bluntness, unexpected wit, and 
surly pleasantries, to the no small diversion of their 
friends and companions. In short, I look upon 
every sensible, true-born Briton to be naturally a 
Bass-Viol." 

WASHINGTON IRVING ON REALISTIC MUSIC AND THE 

VIOLIN. 

" Demi- Semiquaver to Launcelot Langstaff, Esq. 

" SIR, I felt myself hurt and offended by Mr. 
Evergreen's terrible philippic against modern music 
in No. ii of your work, and was under serious 
apprehension that his strictures might bring the art, 
which I have the honour to profess, into contempt. 
So far, sir, from agreeing with Mr. Evergreen in 
thinking that all modern music is but the mere 
dregs and drainings of the ancient, I trust before 
this letter is concluded I shall convince you and 
him that some of the late professors of this en- 
chanting art have completely distanced the paltry 
efforts of the ancients ; and that I, in particular, 
have at length brought it almost to absolute 
perfection. 

" The Greeks, simple souls, were astonished at 
the powers of Orpheus, who made the woods and 
rocks dance to his lyre of Amphion, who con- 
verted crotchets into bricks, and quavers into 
mortar and of Arion, who won upon the com- 



476 THE VIOLIN 

passion of the fishes. In the fervency of admira- 
tion, their poets fabled that Apollo had lent them 
his lyre, and inspired them with his own spirit of 
harmony. What then would they have said had 
they witnessed the wonderful effects of my skill ? 
had they heard me, in the compass of a single 
piece, describe in glowing notes one of the most 
sublime operations of nature, and not only make 
inanimate objects dance, but even speak ; and not 
only speak, but speak in strains of exquisite 
harmony ? 

" I think, sir, I may venture to say there is not a 
sound in the whole compass of nature which I 
cannot imitate, and even improve upon ; nay, what 
I consider the perfection of my art, I have dis- 
covered a method of expressing, in the most 
striking manner, that indefinable, indescribable 
silence which accompanies the falling of snow." 

[Our author describes in detail the different move- 
ments of a grand piece, which he names the 
" Breaking up of the ice in the North River," 
and tells us that the " ice running against Polopay's 
Island with a terrible crash," is represented by a 
fierce fellow travelling with his Fiddle-stick over a 
huge Bass- Viol at the rate of 150 bars a minute, 
and tearing the music to rags this being what is 
called execution.] 

" Thus, sir, you perceive what wonderful powers 
of expression have hitherto been locked up in this 
enchanting art. A whole history is here told 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 477 

without the aid of speech or writing ; and provided 
the hearer is in the least acquainted with music, he 
cannot mistake a single note. As to the blowing up 
of the powder-bank, I look upon it as a chef d'ceuvre 
which I am confident will delight all modern 
amateurs, who very properly estimate music in 
proportion to the noise it makes, and delight in 
thundering cannon and earthquakes. 

"In my warm anticipations of future improve- 
ment, I have sometimes almost convinced myself 
that music will in time be brought to such a climax 
of perfection as to supersede the necessity of speech 
and writing, and every kind of social intercourse be 
conducted by the Flute and Fiddle. The immense 
benefits that will result from this improvement, 
must be plain to every man of the least considera- 
tion. In the present unhappy situation of mortals a 
man has but one way of making himself understood : 
if he loses his speech he must inevitably be dumb 
all the rest of his life ; but having once learned this 
new musical language, the loss of speech will be a 
mere trifle, not worth a moment's uneasiness. This 
manner of discussing may also, I think, be intro- 
duced with great effect into our National Assemblies, 
where every man, instead of wagging his tongue, 
should be obliged to flourish a Fiddle-stick ; by 
which means, if he said nothing to the purpose, he 
would at all events ' discourse most eloquent music,' 
which is more than can be said of them at present. 

" But the most important result of this discovery 



478 THE VIOLIN 

is, that it may be applied to the establishment of 
that great desideratum in the learned world a 
universal language. Wherever this science of 
music is cultivated, nothing more will be necessary 
than a knowledge of its alphabet, which, being 
almost the same everywhere, will amount to a 
universal medium of communication. A man may 
thus with his Violin under his arm, a piece of 
resin, and a few bundles of catgut fiddle his way 
through the world, and never be at a loss to make 
himself understood. I am, &c., 

" DEMI-SEMIQUAVER." 

SPOHR AND HIS GUARNERI. 

" Shortly before my leaving Brunswick I had a 
case made worthy of the splendid Violin I had 
brought from Russia, viz., a very elegant one ; and 
in order to protect this from injury, I had packed it 
up in my trunk, between my linen and clothes. 
I therefore took care that this, which contained my 
whole estate, should be carefully fastened behind 
the carriage with cords. But, notwithstanding, I 
thought it necessary to look out- frequently, particu- 
larly as the driver told me several trunks had been 
cut down from behind 'carriages. As the carriage 
had no window at the back, this continual looking 
out was a very troublesome business, and I was 
therefore very glad when, towards evening, we 
arrived between the gardens of Gottingen, and I 



4/9 

had convinced myself for the last time that the 
trunk was still in its place. Delighted that I had 
brought it so far in safety, I remarked to my fellow- 
traveller : 'My first care shall now be to procure 
a good strong chain and padlock, for the better 
security of the trunk.' 

"In this manner we arrived at the town gate, 
just as they were lighting the lamps. The carriage 
drew up before the guard-house. While Beneke 
gave our names to the sergeant, I anxiously asked 
one of the soldiers who stood round the carriage, 
'Is the trunk still secured?' 'There is no trunk 
there,' was the reply. With one bound I was out 
of the carriage, and rushed out through the gate 
with a drawn hunting-knife. Had I with more 
reflection listened awhile, I might perhaps have 
been fortunate enough to hear and overtake the 
thieves running off by some side-path. But in 
my blind rage I had far overshot the place where 
I had last seen the trunk, and only discovered my 
over-haste when I found myself in the open field. 
Inconsolable for my loss, I turned back. While 
my fellow-traveller looked for the inn, I hastened 
to the police-office and requested that an immediate 
search might be made in the garden houses outside 
the gate. To my astonishment and vexation I was 
informed that the jurisdiction outside the gate 
belonged to Weende, and that I must address my 
request there. As Weende was half a league from 
Gottingen, I was compelled to abandon for that 



480 THE VIOLIN 

evening all further steps for the recovery of my 
Guarneri. I passed a sleepless night, in a state of 
mind such as, in my hitherto fortunate career, had 
been wholly unknown to me. Had I not lost my 
splendid Guarneri, the exponent of all the artistic 
excellence I had till then attained, I could have 
lightly borne the lost of the rest. On the following 
morning the police sent to inform me that an empty 
trunk and a Violin-case had been found in the fields 
behind the gardens. Full of joy I hastened thither, 
in the hope that the thieves might have left the 
Violin in the case, as an object of no value to them ; 
but, unfortunately, it did not prove so. The bow 
of the Violin, a genuine Tourte, secured in the lid 
of the case, had remained undiscovered." Spohr s 
A utobiography . 

SPOHR AND THE COLLECTOR. 

When Louis Spohr was in London in 1820, he 
tells us, in his Autobiography, he received a letter 
couched in the following terms : "Mr. Spohr is 

requested to call upon Dr. to-day at four 

o'clock." " As I did not know the name of the 
writer," he proceeds to relate, " nor could ascertain 
from the servant the purpose for which my attend- 
ance was requested, I replied, in the same laconic 
tone, ' At the hour named I am engaged, and 
cannot come.' The next morning the servant re- 
appeared, bearing a second and more polite note ; 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 481 

' Mr. Spohr is requested to favour Dr. with a 

visit, and to appoint the hour when it will be 
convenient for him to call.' The servant had been 
instructed to offer me the use of his master's 
carriage, and having in the meantime discovered 
that the gentleman was a celebrated physician, a 
patron of music, and a lover of Violins, I drove to 
his house. A courteous old gentleman with grey 
hair met me on the stairs. Unfortunately he 
neither understood French nor German, conse- 
quently we were unable to converse together. We 
stood for a moment somewhat embarrassed, when 
he took my arm and led me into a large room, on 
the walls of which hung a great number of Violins. 
Other Violins had been removed from their cases 
and placed on the tables. The Doctor gave me a 
Violin-bow, and pointed to the instruments. I now 
perceived that he was desirous of having my 
opinion of the instruments. I, therefore, played 
upon them, and placed them in order, according 
to my idea of their merit. When I had selected 
the six most valuable ones, I played upon them 
alternately in order to discover the best of the half- 
dozen. Perceiving that the doctor cast upon one 
instrument glances especially tender whenever I 
played upon it, I gladly afforded the good old man 
pleasure by declaring it to be the best Violin. 
When I took my hat to leave, the old gentleman, 
with a kind smile, slipped a five-pound note into 
my hand. Astonished, I looked at it, and also at 

ii 



482 THE VIOLIN 

the Doctor, not knowing at first what he meant; 
but suddenly it occurred to me that it was intended 
as a fee for having examined his Violins. I 
smilingly shook my head, laid the note on the table, 
pressed the Doctor's hand, and descended the 
stairs. Some months later, upon the occasion of 
my benefit concert, the Doctor procured a ticket, 
for which he sent a ten-pound note." 

THE ETTRICK SHEPHERD AND THE VIOLIN. 

" But the pleasantest part of our fellowship is yet 
to describe. At a certain period of the night, our 
entertainer (the renowned Timothy Tickler) knew 
by the longing looks which I cast to a beloved 
corner of the dining-room what was wanting. 
Then with, ' Oh, I beg your pardon, Hogg, I was 
forgetting,' he would take out a small gold key 
that hung by a chain of the same precious metal 
to a particular button-hole, and stalk away as tall 
as the life, open two splendid Fiddle-cases, and 
produce their contents, first the one, and then the 
other; but always keeping the best to himself ; I'll 
never forget with what elated dignity. There was 
a twist of the lip, and an upward beam of the eye, 
that were truly sublime. Then down we sat, side 
by side, and began at first gently, and with easy 
motion, like skilful grooms, keeping ourselves up 
for the final heat, which was slowly but surely 
approaching. At the end of every tune we took a 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 483 

glass, and still our enthusiastic admiration of the 
Scottish tunes increased our energies of execution 
redoubled, till ultimately it became not only a 
complete and well-contested race, but a trial of 
strength, to determine which should drown the 
other. The only feeling short of ecstasy that came 
across us in these enraptured moments were caused 
by hearing the laugh and joke going on with our 
friends, as if no such thrilling strains had been 
flowing. But if Tim's eye chanced to fall on them, 
it instantly retreated upwards again in mild indigna- 
tion. To his honour be it mentioned, he has left 
me a legacy of that inestimable Violin, provided 
that I outlive him. But not for a thousand such 
would I part with my old friend." Altrine Tales. 
Hoggs Reminiscences of Former Days. 

THE FIDDLE TRADE. 

" There is, for, instance, Old Borax, whom those 
who want to know whereabouts to look for within 
the shadow of St. Martin's Church. 

" Borax makes but little demonstration of his 
wealth in the dingy hole that serves him for a shop, 
where a Double- Bass, a couple of Violoncellos, a 
Tenor or two hanging on the walls, and" half-a- 
dozen Fiddles lying among a random collection 
of bows, bridges, coils of catgut, packets of purified 
resin, and tangled horsehair in skerns, serve for the 
insignia of his profession. But Borax never does 



484 THE VIOLIN 

business in his shop, which is a dusty desert from 
one week's end to another. His warehouse is 
a private sanctum on the first floor, where you 
will find him in his easy chair reading the morning 
paper, if he does not happen to be engaged with 
a client. Go to him for a Fiddle, or carry 
him a Fiddle for his opinion, and you will 
hardy fail to acknowledge that you stand in 
the presence of a first-rate judge. The truth is, 
that Fiddles of all nations, disguised and sophisticated 
as they may be to deceive common observers, are 
naked and self-confessed in his hands. Dust, dirt, 
varnish, and bees'-wax are thrown away upon him ; 
he knows the work of every man, of note or of no 
note, whether English, French, Dutch, German, 
Spaniard, or Italian, who ever sent a Fiddle into 
the market, for the last two hundred years ; and he 
will tell you who is the fabricator of your treasure, 
and the rank he holds in the Fiddle-making world, 
with the utmost readiness and urbanity on payment 
of his fee of one guinea. 

" Borax is the pink of politeness, though a bit of 
a martinet after an ancient and punctilious model. 
If you go to select a Fiddle from his stock, you may 
escape a lecture of a quarter of an hour by calling 
it a Fiddle, and not a Violin, which is a word he 
detests, and is apt to excite his wrath. He is never 
in a hurry to sell, and will by no means allow you to 
conclude a bargain until he has put you in complete 
possession of the virtues, and failings, if if. have any, 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 485 

of the instrument for which you are to pay a round 
sum. As his Fiddles lie packed in sarcophagi, like 
mummies in an Egyptian catacomb, your choice 
is not perplexed by any embarras de richesses ; you 
see but one masterpiece at a time, and Borax 
will take care that you do see that, and know all 
about it, before he shows you another. First un- 
locking the case, he draws the instrument tenderly 
from its bed, grasps it in the true critical style with 
the fingers and thumbs of both hands a little above 
the bridge, turning the scroll towards you. Now 
and then he twangs, with the thumb of his left hand, 
the third or fourth string, by way of emphasis to 
the observations which he feels bound to make 
instinctively avoiding, however, that part of the 
strings subject to the action of the bow. Giving 
you the name of the maker, he proceeds to enlighten 
you on the peculiar characteristics of his work ; 
then he will dilate upon the remarkable features 
of the specimen he holds in his hand its build, its 
model, the closeness and regularity of the grain of 
the wood of which the belly was fashioned : the 
neatness, or, wanting that, the original style of the 
purfling the exquisite mottling of the back, which 
is wrought, he tells you, 'by the cunning hand of 
nature in the primal growth of the tree' twang. 
Then he will break out in placid exclamations of 
delight upon the gracefulness of the swell twang 
and the noble rise in the centre twang and 
make you pass your hand over it to convince your- 



486 THE VIOLIN 

self ; after which, he carefully wipes it down with 
a silk handkerchief. This process superinduces 
another favourite theme of eulogium namely, the 
unparalleled hue and tone (of colour) imparted by 
the old Italian varnish a hue, he is sure to inform 
you, which it is impossible to imitate by any modern 
nostrums twang. Then he reverts to the subject 
of a Fiddle's indispensables and fittings ; discourses 
learnedly on the carving of scrolls, and the absurd 
substitution, by some of the German makers, of 
lions' heads in lieu of them ; hinting, by the way, 
that said makers are asses, and that their instru- 
ments bray when they should speak twang. Then 
touching briefly on the pegs, which he prefers un- 
ornamented, he will hang lingeringly upon the neck, 
pronounce authoritatively upon the right degree of 
elevation of the finger-board, and the effects of 
its due adjustment upon the vibration of the whole 
body-harmonic, and, consequently, upon the tone. 
Then, jumping over the bridge, he will animad- 
vert on the tail-piece ; after which, entering at the 
/-holes not without a fervent encomium upon their 
graceful drawing and neatness of cut twang he 
will introduce you to the arcanum mysterii, the 
interior of the marvellous fabric point out to you, 
as plainly as though you were gifted with clair- 
voyance, the position and adaptation of the various 
linings, the bearings of the bass-bar, that essential 
adjunct to quality of tone twang and the proper 
position of the sound-post. Lastly, he will show 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 487 

you, by means of a small hand-mirror throwing a 
gleam of light into its entrails, the identical auto- 
graph of the immortal maker Albani, Guarneri, 
or Amati, as the case may happen with the date 
printed in the lean old type and now scarcely visible 
through the dust of a couple of centuries, ' Amati 
Cremonse fecit 1645,' followed by a manuscript 
signature in faded ink, which you must take for 
granted. 

" Borax has but one price ; and if you do not 
choose to pay it, you must do without the article. 
The old fellow is a true believer, and is accounted 
the first judge in Europe ; Fiddles travel to him 
from all parts of the Continent for his opinion, 
bringing their fees with them ; and for every 
instrument he sells, it is likely he pronounces 
judgment upon a hundred. It is rumoured that the 
greatest masterpieces in being are in his possession. 

" A dealer of a different stamp is Michael 
Schnapps, well known in the trade, and the pro- 
fession too, as a ravenous Fiddle-ogre, who buys 
and sells everything that bears the Fiddle shape, 
from a Double -Bass to a dancing-master's pocket- 
able Kit. His house is one vast warehouse, with 
Fiddles on the walls, Fiddles on the staircases, and 
Fiddles hanging like stalactites from the ceilings. 
To him the tyros resort when they first begin to 
scrape ; he will set them up for ten shillings, and 
swop them up afterwards, step by step, to ten or 
wenty guineas, and to ten times that amount if 



488 THE VIOLIN 

they are rich enough and green enough to continue 
the experiment. Schnapps imports Fiddles in the 
rough, under the designation of toys, most of which 
are the production of his peasant-countrymen 
bordering on the Black Forest ; and with these he 
supplies the English provinces and the London 
toy and stationers' shops. He is, further, a master 
of the Fiddle-making craft himself, and so con- 
summate an adept in repairing that nothing short of 
consuming fire can defeat his art. When Pinker, 
of Norwich, had his Cremona smashed all to atoms 
in a railway collision, Schnapps rushed down to the 
scene of the accident, bought the lot of splintered 
fragments for a couple of pounds, and in a fort- 
night had restored the magnificent Stradivari 
to its original integrity, and cleared 150 guineas 
by its sale. But Schnapps is a humbug at 
bottom an everlasting copyist and manufacturer 
of dead masters, Italian, German, and English. 
He has sold more Amatis in his time than 
Amati himself ever made. He knows the secret 
of the old varnish ; he has hidden stores of old 
wood planks of cherry-tree and mountain-ash 
centuries old, and worm-eaten sounding-boards 
of defunct Harpsichords, and reserves of the close- 
grained pine hoarded for ages. He has a miniature 
printing press, and a fount of the lean-faced, long- 
forgotten type, and a stock of the old ribbed paper 
torn from the fly-leaves of antique folios ; and, 
of course, he has always on hand a collection of 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 489 

the most wonderful instruments at the most won- 
derful prices, for the professional man or the con- 
noisseur. 

" ' You vant to py a Pfeedel,' says Schnapps. 
' I sail sell you de pest dat ish, de pest for the 
mowny. Vat you sail gif for him ? ' 

" ' Well, I can go as far as ten guineas,' says 
the customer. 

" ' Ten kinnis is good for von goot Pfeedel ; bote 
besser is tventy, tirty, feefty kinnis, or von hunder, 
look you ; bote ten kinnis is goot you sail see.' 

"Schnapps is all simplicity and candour in his 
dealings. The probability is, however, that his 
ten-guinea Fiddle would be fairly purchased at 
five, and that you might have been treated to 
the same article had you named thirty or forty 
guineas instead of ten. 

" I once asked Schnapps if he knew wherein 
lay the excellence of the old Italian instruments. 

" ' Mein Gott ! if I don't, who de teifil does ? ' 

" Then he went on to inform me that it did 
not lie in any peculiarity in the model, though there 
was something in that ; nor in the wood of the 
back, though there was something in that ; nor 
in the fine and regular grain of the pine which 
formed the belly, though there was something in 
that ; nor in the position of the grain running 
precisely parallel with the strings, though there 
was something in that ; nor in the sides, nor in 
the finger-board, nor in the linings, nor in the 



490 THE VIOLIN 

bridge, nor in the strings, nor in the waist, 
though there was something in all of them ; nor 
yet in the putting together, though there was 
much in that. 

" ' Where does it lie, then, Mr. Schnapps ? ' 
" ' Ah, der henker! hang if I know.' 
" ' Has age much to do with it, think you ? " 
" ' Not mosche. Dere is pad Pfeedels two 
hunder years ole as veil as goot vons ; and dere 
is goot Pfeedels of pad models, vitch is made 
fery pad, and pad Pfeedels of de fery pest models, 
and peautiful made as you sail vish to see.' 

" This is the sum total of the information to 
be got out of Schnapps on that mysterious subject. 
On other matters he can pronounce with greater 
exactness. He knows every Cremona in private 
or professional hands in the whole kingdom ; and 
where the owner bought it, if he did buy it ; and 
what he gave for it, or from whom he inherited 
it, if it came to him as heir-loom. Of those of 
them which have passed through his hands, he 
has got fac-similes taken in plaster, which serve 
as exemplars for his own manufactures. Upon 
the death of the owner of one of these rarities, 
Schnapps takes care to learn particulars ; and if 
the effects of the deceased come under the hammer, 
he starts off to the sale, however distant, where, 
unless some of his metropolitan rivals in trade 
have likewise caught the scent, he has the bidding 
all his own way, and carries off the prize. 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 491 

" The inundation of German Fiddles, which may 
be bought new for a few shillings, has swamped 
English makers of cheap instruments, of which 
there are by this time five times as many in the 
market as there is any occasion for. Hence it 
is that Fiddles meet us everywhere ; they cumber 
the toy-shop ; they house with the furniture dealer ; 
they swarm by thousands in the pawnbrokers' 
stores, and block out the light from his windows ; 
they hang on the tobacconists' walls ; they are 
raffled at public-houses ; and they form an item 
in every auctioneer's catalogue. 

" Meanwhile the multiplication of rubbish only 
enhances the value of gold ; and a Fiddle worthy 
of an applauding verdict from old Borax is more 
difficult of acquisition than ever. So I shall keep 
my Cremona." 

THE PRINCE AND THE FUGAL VORTEX. 

A Royal amateur and British Admiral, a lover 
of the Violin and patron of music, happened whilst 
at Malta to be leading Mozart's charming Quartet 
in G major 



Allegro vivace assai. 




The opening movement, together with the Minuet, 
Trio, and Andante having been rendered with 




492 THE VIOLIN 

pleasure and satisfaction, the Finale was entered 
upon with due determination. 
Its fugal subject 

Molto Allegro. 

was well under way, and speedily in full sail. 
Ere long an evident indecision of purpose manifested 
itself, the motive or subject failing to elicit other 
than dubious answers to its calls ; it was emphasised 
with loudness, not without signs of impatience, 
but to no purpose ; all became hopelessly involved 
and incoherent, until at length, like the ice de- 
scribed by the "Ancient Mariner" 

" The fugue was here, the fugue was there, 

The fugue was all around ; 
It cracked and growled and roared and howled 
Like noises in a swound." 

The second Violin, overcome by the surging 
counterpoint, ceased playing, and with the adroit- 
ness of a Raleigh turned to the Prince and said, 
" Pardon me, your Royal Highness, I fear we have 
been carried away by the vortex of the melody." 
The execution of chamber compositions belonging 
to the higher walks of counterpoint is frequently 
disappointing, but seldom or never is the failure so 
gracefully and agreeably accounted for. 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 493 

SALE OF CREMONESE INSTRUMENTS AT MILAN, AT THE 
END OF THE LAST CENTURY. 

(Extracted from the " Gazetta di Firenze" 1790.) 

The following instruments were offered for sale 
at Milan, by Signor Francesco Albinoni, in March, 
1790: 

1 . Violin by Antonio and Girolamo Amati, Cremona 1616 

2. ,, Niccolo Amati 1647 

3- ditto ... 1667 

4. ,, Andrea Guarneri ... ... ... 1657 

5. Giuseppe Guarneri, figlio 1705 

6. ,, Antonio Stradivari 1708 

7. ditto ... 1719 

8. ,, ,, Giovanni Ruggeri 1653 

9. ,, Francesco Ruggeri... ... ... 1670 

i o. Tenor by Antonio and Girolamo Amati ... 1617 

IT. ditto ditto ... 1618 

12. Francesco Ruggeri... ... 1619 

13. Violoncello by Amati, Cremona 1622 

14. Andrea Guarneri 1692 

i 

The above announcement cannot fail to make 
one reflect on the different degree of interest excited 
by a sale of Cremonas a century ago and one at 
the present time. The sale conducted by Signor 
Albinoni, in 1790, at Milan, doubtless passed with 
but little, if any, display of enthusiasm, and were 
it now possible to learn the prices realised, they 
would certainly give occasion for surprise when 
compared with those now obtained. As regards 



494 THE VIOLIN 

the increased interest taken in rare Violins, the 
sale of the Gillott collection, in 1872, furnishes 
an instance of comparatively recent date. The 
announcement of Messrs. Christie and Manson 
served to bring together in King Street, St. James's, 
a legion of Violin votaries. So unusual was the 
excitement that the Graphic had one of its pages 
occupied by an excellent representation of "View- 
ing the Violins." In Paris, in the year 1878, the 
sale of a Stradivari Violin, at the Hotel Drouot, 
gave rise to an unusual display of interest. The 
first bid was for ten thousand francs, and the 
Stradivari, dated 1709, was knocked down for the 
large sum of twenty-two thousand one hundred 
francs. When the biddings at the Hotel des Ventes 
had reached eighteen thousand francs, a casualty, 
which might have led to unpleasant results, lent 
additional zest to the proceedings. There was a 
great pressure among the crowd to obtain a sight 
of the Stradivari. Two or three of the more 
adventurous spirits clambered on to a table to 
gain a clear prospect of the precious Fiddle, 
causing the legs of the table to give way and the 
enthusiasts to be precipitated to the ground. A 
cry of terror less for the fallen than for the 
Fiddle arose from the throng ; but soon the voice 
of the auctioneer was heard proclaiming, in re- 
assuring accents, " Do not be alarmed, gentlemen ; 
the Stradivari is safe ! " 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 495 

AN INDEFATIGABLE VIOLINIST. 

"Puppo, the Violinist, being in Paris in 1793, 
was summoned before the Committee of Public 
Safety on suspicion, when the following interro- 
gatories were put to him : ' Your name ? ' ' Puppo.' 
' What were you doing during the time of the 
tyrant?' 'I played the Violin.' 'What do you 
do now ? ' ' I play the Violin.' ' And what will 
you do for the nation?' 'I will play the Violin.'" 

A WISH. 

" Busts, cameos, gems such things as these 

Which others often show for pride, 
I value for their power to please 

And selfish churls deride ; 
One Stradivari, I confess. 
Two meerschaums, I would fain possess." 
Extract from Oliver Wendell Holmes' Lines on Contentment. 

LIVING STRADIVARIS. 

A passionate lover of Fiddles, being in Milan, 
made the acquaintance of an Italian who, like 
himself, was a lover of the bow. They had not 
long met before the theme of their mutual delight 
was broached ; the beautiful features in the works 
of the great masters were dwelt upon, their 
respective points of genius discriminated, until 
the freemasonry of Fiddle-connoisseurship was 
exhausted. Inquiries were exchanged as to the 



496 THE VIOLIN 

whereabouts of remarkable specimens, when sud- 
denly the Italian's face brightened, and gave in- 
dication that a happy thought had crossed his 
mind. " By the way, I can introduce you to a 
friend who has in his possession some choice 
Stradivaris, of various dates, and having heads 
of a very marked character." His companion 
was on his feet before he finished speaking, 
eagerly demanding where these choice " Strads " 
were to be seen. The distance being but a few 
streets off, it was agreed that they should start 
at once. On arriving at a house in the Via 
Meravigli, the Italian inquired of the servant if 
his master was at home. Being assured of this, 
the Fiddler-connoisseurs were shown into an 
apartment, where they anxiously awaited the host. 
Presently he entered, and the usual exchange of 
courtesies having been gone through, the Italian, 
with the utmost gravity, inquired after the Stradi- 
varis, and received answer that they never were 
better ; his companion, who was burning to feast 
his eyes on them, begged that he might have 
the pleasure of seeing them. The host, flattered 
by the interest taken in his "Strads" by his 
visitor, acquiesced, left the room, and brought in 
his collection, which, if not unique, was in every 
way original. It consisted of five Stradivaris 
three boys and two girls. Unable longer to restrain 
his laughter, the Italian broke forth into one of 
those hearty peals which terminate only when 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 497 

the risible faculties are completely exhausted. 
Signer Stradivari, the happy parent of the collec- 
tion just ushered into the room, regarded his 
visitor with astonishment, in which he was joined 
by the specimens of various dates. Ultimately 
the countenance of Signer Stradivari began to 
assume anything but a pleased appearance, as 
he had failed to comprehend what there was about 
his cherished ones to excite such ungovernable 
mirth. When the joke was explained, it is need- 
less to say that the wit's friend, the connoisseur, 
suffered some disappointment, but soon heartily 
joined in the laugh raised at his expense. Signer 
Stradivari and his family were not long kept 
behind the curtain, and soon added their laugh 
to that of the rest of the company. 

PLEASURES OF IMAGINATION. 

A lady belonging to Covent Garden Theatre, 
who had never heard Paganini, requested leave 
to be present at one of the rehearsals of his con- 
certs. It happened that Paganini did not bring his 
Violin with him, but borrowed one from a mem- 
ber of the orchestra, and, instead of playing, 
made a kind of pizzicato obbligato. After the 
rehearsal was finished, the lady addressed Mr. 
Cooke : " Oh, dear, Mr. Cooke, what a wonderful 
man he is ! I declare, I may say, that till this morn- 
ing I never knew what music was capable of." 

KK 



498 THE VIOLIN 

Cooke replied, " Indeed, madam, he is truly wonder- 
ful ; but allow me to observe that on this occasion 
you are indebted rather to your imagination than 
your ears for the delight you have experienced." 
" How, Mr. Cooke ? " " Why, madam, this morn- 
ing Paganini has not played at all he has not even 
touched a bow." "Extraordinary!" exclaimed 
the lady ; " I am more than ever confirmed in 
my opinion of him ; for if without playing he can 
affect one in such a manner, how much more 
wonderful are the sensations he must produce 
when he does play ! " 

A ROYAL AMATEUR. 

" Francis the First, Emperor of Austria, was a 
passionate lover of music, and played admirably 
on the flute. His greatest pleasure was to perform 
the Trios and Quartetts of the old masters. One 
of the household physicians of the court excelled 
on the Tenor. As imperial etiquette did not permit 
a simple physician to accompany the Emperor in 
his pieces unless he had the entree at court, Francis 
first created his doctor a baron, and then a privy 
councillor, thus giving him his petites and grandes 
entries. By the help of his Tenor-playing our 
medical musician insinuated himself so successfully 
into the good graces of the Emperor, that he 
became almost the rival of Metternich, and all 
the other ministers courted his friendship. Such 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 499 

was the rise of the celebrated Baron Still. But 
for his Tenor, this all-powerful favourite of Francis 
the First wuold have lived and died an obscure 
physician. " Critique Musicale. 

POPE PIUS IX. AND THE MUSICIAN. 

" An Italian composer, named Peregrini, was 
a fellow-student of Mastai Ferretti, now the oc- 
cupant of the Papal chair. Since their quitting 
college, Fortune abandoned the maestro, whilst 
she smiled upon the priest. One day Pius IX. 
received the following letter : ' Most Holy 
Father, I know not if you recollect that I had 
the honour of being your fellow-student at College, 
and that your Holiness has done me the honour 
of playing duos with me on the Violin ; and that 
the execution of them was not always irreproach- 
able, at least on my part, which so displeased 
your Holiness at the time that you deigned to 
apply certain corrections to my fingers. I have 
taken the liberty of revealing myself to your 
recollection, and to pray you to take under your 
protection one who can never cease to remember 
the happy moments he has passed with him 
whose apostolic virtues have raised him to the 
throne of St. Peter.' The Pope replied, ' I have 
never forgotten your name, my son ; come to 
me at Rome, and we will again play duets 
together, and if you have not progressed in your 



500 THE VIOLIN 

studies, I shall know how again to correct you.' ' 
Hogarth's Musical Herald. 

OLE BULL AND FIDDLE VARNISH. 

"A man who had a patent varnish for Violins, 
brought his invention to Ole Bull, and begged 
him to try it. He said that it gave ordinary in- 
struments the sweet quality of a Cremona Fiddle. 
Ole Bull tried it, and found that it improved 
the tone, and promised to use a Violin prepared 
with it at a concert he had to give at the house 
of the Duke of Riario. There was a great deal 
of fashionable company at this concert, and the 
heat of the room melted this famous varnish, 
which was really a preparation of asafcetida. 
The smell which it exuded was so maddening 
that an ordinary man would have stopped and 
excused himself; but Ole Bull merely closed his 
eyes, turned his face away, and played with an 
energy which became more frenzied the more 
intolerable the stink became. He enjoyed an 
overwhelming success, and the Duke, rushed 
forward to seize his hand in congratulation. The 
appalling odour of asafcetida struck him in 
the face, and Ole Bull had to explain in what 
agony he had been performing." Ole Bull's 
"Breve i Uddrag" by Jonas Lie, Copenhagen, 
1881. 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 501 

ON THE TREATMENT OF THE VIOLIN. 
In a Letter from the celebrated Tartini. 

The letter here presented to my readers was 
translated and published by Dr. Burney, in 1779, 
under the following title: "A Letter from the 
late Signor Tartini to Signora Maddalena Lom- 
bardini (afterwards Signora Sirmen). Published 
as an important lesson to performers on the 
Violin. 

"' PADUA, March 5, 1760. 

"'MY VERY MUCH ESTEEMED SlGNORA MADDALENA, 

" ' Finding myself at length disengaged from 
the weighty business which has so long pre- 
vented me from performing my promise to you, 
a promise which was made with too much sin- 
cerity for my want of punctuality not .to afflict 
me, I shall begin the instructions you wish from 
me by letter ; and if I should not explain myself 
with sufficient clearness, I entreat you to tell 
me your doubts and difficulties, in writing, 
which I shall not fail to remove in a future 
letter. 

" ' Your principal practice and study should, 
at present be confined to the use and power of 
the bow, in order to make yourself entirely mis- 
tress in the execution and expression of what- 



502 THE VIOLIN 

ever can be played or sung, within the compass 
and ability of your instrument. Your first study, 
therefore, should be the true manner of holding, 
balancing, and pressing the bow lightly but 
steadily upon the strings ; in such a manner as 
it shall seem to breathe the first tone it gives, 
which must proceed from the friction of the 
string, and not from percussion, as by a blow 
given with a hammer upon it. This depends on 
laying the bow lightly upon the strings at the 
first contact, and on gently pressing it afterwards, 
which, if done gradually, can scarcely have too 
much force given to it, because, if the tone 
is begun with delicacy, there is little danger 
of rendering it afterwards either coarse or 
harsh. 

" ' Of this first contact and delicate manner of 
beginning a tone you should make yourself a 
perfect mistress in every situation and part of 
the bow, as well in the middle as at the ex- 
tremities ; and in moving it up as well as in 
drawing it down. To unite all these laborious 
particulars into one lesson, my advice is, that 
you first exercise yourself in a swell upon an 
open string for example, upon the second string ; 
that you begin pianissimo, and increase the tone by 
slow degrees to \\sforiissimo; and this study should 
be equally made with the motion of the bow up 
and down, in which exercise you should spend at 
least an hour every day, though at different times, 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 503 

a little in the morning and a little in the evening ; 
having constantly in mind, that this is, of all 
others, the most difficult and the most essential 
to playing on the Violin. When you are a perfect 
mistress of this part of a good performer, 
a swell will be very easy to you ; beginning 
with the most minute softness, increasing the 
tone to its loudest degree, and diminishing it 
to the same point of softness with which you 
began, and all this in the same stroke of the 
bow. Every degree of pressure upon the string 
which the expression of a note or passage shall 
require will by this means be easy and certain ; 
and you will be able to execute with your bow 
whatever you please. After this, in order to 
acquire that light pulsation and play of the wrist, 
from whence velocity in bowing arises, it will be 
best for you to practise every day one of the 
Allegros, of which there are three in Corelli's 
Solos, which entirely move in semiquavers. The 
first is in D, in playing which you should ac- 
celerate the motion a little each time, till you 
arrive at the quickest degree of swiftness possible ; 
but two precautions are . necessary in this exercise 
the first is, that you play the notes staccato, 
that is, separate and detached, with a little space 
between every two, for though they are written 
thus 



504 THE VIOLIN 

hey should be played as if there was a rest after 
every note, in this manner 



= --.- = -ir- &c. 




The second precaution is, that you first play with 
the point of the bow ; and when that becomes 
easy to you, that you use that part of it which 
is between that part and the middle ; and when 
you are likewise mistress of this part of the bow, 
that you practise in the same manner with the 
middle of the bow ; and, above all, you must 
remember in these studies to begin the Allegros 
or flights sometimes with an up-bow ; and some- 
times with a down-bow, carefully avoiding the 
habit of constantly practising one way. In order 
to acquire a greater facility of executing swift 
passages in a light and neat manner, it will be 
of great use to you if you accustom yourself to 
skip over a string between two quick notes in 
divisions, like these 



. it 



- 

^ 



g .a. .*. .. .,. f _ f 






Of such divisions you may play extempore as 
many as possible, and in every key, which will 
be both useful and necessary. 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 505 

' With regard to the finger-board, or carriage 
of the left hand, I have one thing strongly to 
recommend to you, which will suffice for all; 
and that is, the taking a Violin part, either the 
first or second of a concerto, sonata, or song 
anything will serve the purpose and playing it 
upon the half-shift, that is, with the first finger 
upon G on the first string, and constantly keeping 
upon this shift, playing the whole piece without 
moving the hand from this situation, unless A 
on the fourth string be wanted, or D upon the 
first ; but in that case, you should afterwards 
return again to the half-shift, without ever moving 
the hand down to the natural position. This 
practice should be continued till you can execute 
with facility upon the half-shift any Violin part 
not intended as a solo, at sight. After this, 
advance the hand on the finger-board to the 
whole-shift, with the first finger upon A on the 
first string, and accustom yourself to this position 
till you can execute everything upon the whole- 
shift with as much ease as when the hand is in 
its natural situation ; and when certain of this, 
advance to the double-shift, with the first finger 
upon B, on the first string ; and when sure of 
that likewise, pass to the fourth position of the 
hand, making C with the first finger upon the 
first string ; and indeed this is a scale in which, 
when you are firm, you* may be said to be mistress 
of the finger-board. This study is so necessary, 



506 THE VIOLIN 

that I most earnestly recommend it to your atten- 
tion. 

" ' I now pass to the third essential part of 
a good performer on the Violin, which is the 
making of a good shake, and I would have you 
practise it slow, moderately fast, and quick ; that 
is, with the two notes succeeding each other in 
these three degrees of adagio, andante, and, presto ; 
and in practice you have great occasion for these 
different kinds of shakes ; for the same shake 
will not serve with equal propriety for a slow 
movement as for a quick one ; but to acquire 
both at once with the same trouble, begin with 
an open string, either the first or second, it will 
be equally useful ; sustain the note in a swell, 
and begin the shake very slow, increasing in 
quickness, by insensible degrees, till it becomes 
rapid, in the manner following : 



FFFI FrR 




But you must not vigorously move immediately 
from semiquavers to demisemiquavers, as in this 
example, or from these to the next in degree- 
that would be doubling the velocity of the shake 
all at once, which would be a skip, not a gradu- 
ation ; but you can imagine between a semiquaver 



ANECDOTES AND MISCELLANEA 507 

and a demisemiquaver intermediate degrees of 
rapidity, quicker than the one, and slower than 
the other of these characters ; you are therefore 
to increase in velocity by the same degrees in 
practising the shake, as in loudness when you 
make a swell. You must attentively and assidu- 
ously persevere in the practice of this embellish- 
ment, and begin at first with an open string, upon 
which if you are once able to make a good shake 
with the first finger, you will with the greater 
facility acquire one with the second, the third, 
and the fourth, or little finger, with which you 
must practise in a particular manner, as more 
feeble than the rest of its brethren. I shall, at 
present, propose no other studies to your applica- 
tion : what I have already said is more than 
sufficient, if your zeal is equal to my wishes for 
your improvement. I hope you will sincerely 
inform me whether I have explained myself clearly 
thus far ; that you will accept of my respects, 
which I likewise beg of you to present to the 
Prioress, to Signora Teresa, and to Signora 
Chiara, for all whom I have a sincere regard ; 
and believe me to be with great affection, 

" ' Your obedient and most humble servant, 

" ' GIUSEPPE TARTINI.' " 



INDEX 



PAGE 

Absam, Thomas... ... ... 293 

Acevo 77 

Adam, as a Violist 3 

Adams ... 293 

Addison, William 293 

Aireton, Edmund, good work, 

Amatese model 293 

Alard, M., composer and Pro- 
fessor at the Conservatoire ... 395 

Albanesi, Sebastiano 77 

Albani 259 

Albani, Mathias (2) ; Italian 
style, good model and work- 
manship 259 

Albani, Paolo 260 

Albani, Mathias, Stainer form, 

good varnish 259 

Aldred 293 

Aldric, copier of Stradivari; deal- 
ings with Luigi Tarisio ... 231 

Aletzie, Paolo 260 

Allar 231 

Alvani 78 

Amati, Andrea, his Violins 
mostly " Three - quarter " ; 
founder of the School of 
Cremona ; character of his 
Varnish ; his method of 
cutting ; his " Charles IX. 
Set," in the Chapel Royal, 

Versailles 78-81 

Amati, the Brothers Antonio and 
Girolamo, character of their 
work ... ... 81 



Amati, Girolamo, son of Niccolo, 
his instruments described ; 
character of his varnish ... 92 
Amati, Niccolo, the greatest of 
his family ; special charac- 
teristics of his work ...84-92 

Amelot 231 

Anecdotes and Miscellanea con- 
nected with the Violin ... 410 
Apollo and Orpheus, in Fiddle 

History 3 

Appleby, Mr. Samuel, letter 
from, on the Gasparo da Salo 
Double-Bass of Signer Dra- 

gonetti 465 

Arabian Origin of the Ribeca, 

alleged 7 

Arabians, Inventors of the Mono- 
chord 7 

Ariberti, Bartolommeo, Marquis, 

his letter to Stradivari ... 193 
Arisi, Desiderio on Stradivari 185 
Artmann, copier of Amati ... 260 
Asiatic Origin of the Violin, 

alleged 4 

Askey, Samuel 293 

Aubry 231 

Augiere 231 

Augustus, Elector of Saxony 
and King of Poland, his 
patronage of Stradivari ... 207 

B 

Bachelier 231 

Bach, John Sebastian ; influence 



509 



INDEX 



of his great compositions on 
the development of Violin- 
playing 404 

Bachmann, Carl Ludwig, Court 

Musician to Frederick the 

Great ; founder of concerts 

for amateurs at Berlin ... 260 

Bachmann, O., author of a book 

on Bow Instruments 260 

Bagatella, Antonio 95 

Bagatella, Pi etro 95 

Baillot, Pierre, Violinist ... 394 

Baines ... 293 

Baker 293 

Balestrieri, character of his In- 
struments ... ... ... 95 

Ballantine 293 

Baltzar, Thomas, Violinist ... 382 
Banks, Benjamin ; high char- 
acter of his work 294 

Banks, Benjamin (2) 296 

Banks, James and Henry ... 296 
Bannister, John, Violinist ... 383 

Barnes, Robert 297 

Barrett,John,follower of Stainer, 

good quality 297 

Barton, George 297 

Bassiano ... ... 96 

Bassot ... 231 

Bausch, Ludwig C. A 261 

Bausch, L. B 261 

Bausch, Otto B 261 

Bazzini, Antonio, Violinist ... 392 

Beckmann 261 

Bedler ... ... 261 

Beethoven, and his works for 

the Violin 407 

Bellosio, Anselmo 96 

Benda, Francis, Violinist and 

composer 403 

Bente, Matteo 96 

Bergonzi, Benedetto 103 

Bergonzi, Carlo (i), pupil of 
Antonio Stradivari ; charac- 
teristics of his work ; com- 
parison with Giuseppe Guar- 
neri and Stradivari ; his 



resplendent varnish ; his 

Violins and Violoncellos ... 96 

Bergonzi, Carlo (2) ... ... 103 

Bergonzi, Michel Angelo, 

pattern of his instruments ... 102 

Bergonzi, Niccolo, his work ... 102 

Bergonzi, Zosimo 103 

Bertolotti (Caspar da Salo) ... 168 
Beriot, Charles de, Belgian com- 
poser and Violinist 395 

Bernard el, Sebastien Philippe, 
worked with Lupot ; excellent 

work ... ... 231 

Bertassi, Ambrogio ... ... 103 

Bertrand, Nicholas, Viol-maker 232 
Betts, Edward, copyist of Amati, 

high finish ... ... ... 297 

Betts, John, pupil of Duke ... 298 
Betts Stradivari, The, and Mr. 
Charles Reade's letter thereon 

" Betts Strad," The 466 

Bimbi, B 103 

Bindernagel, good copyist of 

Amati 261 

Blagrove, Henry, his " Concerti 

da Camera " ... ... ... 401 

Blasius, St., MS. destroyed by 

fire ... ... 14 

Boccherini, his Quintetts ... 390 

^oivin, Claude, Guitar-maker... 232 

Bolles 299 

Booth ... ... ... ... 299 

Booth, William ... 299 

Boquay, Jacques ; old French 
School ; good character of 

work ... 232 

Borelli, Andrea 103 

Borlon, Artus, or Arnould ... 233 

Borlon, Frangois, Viol-maker . . . 233 

Borlon, Joannes, Viol-maker ... 233 
Borlon (or Porlon), Pierre, 

Double-Bass maker 233 

Boucher 299 

Boullangier, C. ... 233 

Boumeester ... 233 

Bourdet, Jacques 234 

Bourdet, Sebastien 234 

...- 



INDEX 



Boussu, Eterbeck 234 

Bowed Instruments.Early refer- 
ences to 5 

Braccia, Viol da, The 13 

Brensio, Girolamo (Brensius)... 103 

Brescia, Da, Battista 104 

Brescia, the cradle of Violin 

making ... 65 

Breton Le 234 

Bridge, The, its position, form, 

and selection 38 

Britton, Tom, The " Small-coal 

Man" 384 

Broschi, Carlo ... 104 

Browne, John ... ... ... 299 

Brown, James 299 

Buchstadter ... 261 

Budiani, Giovita (see Rodiani) 164 
Bull, Ole B., his great artistic 

skill 393 

Busseto, Giovanni M 104 



Cahusac 299 

Calcagni, Bernardo 104 

Calot 234 

Calvarola, Bartolommeo ... 104 

Camilli, Camillo... ... ... 104 

Campagnoli, his " Studies " and 

" Violin School " 391 

Cappa, Gioffredo, high cha- 
racter of his work 105 

Carcassi ... ... 106 

Carrodus, John, Violinist ... 402 

Carter, John 299 

Casini, Antonio ... ... ... 106 

Castagneri, Andrea 107 

Castagnery, Jean Paul ... ... 107 

Castellane 107 

Castro ... ..." 107 

Catenar, Enrico ... 107 

" Catgut," a misnomer ... ... 48 

Catlins, Venetian ... ... 46 

Celionati, Gian Francesco ... 107 

Cerin, Marco Antonio 107 

Ceruti, Enrico, exhibitioner in 

London and Milan Exhibition 108 



Ceruti, Giovanni Battista, fol- 
lower of Amati pattern ... 107 

Ceruti, Giuseppe 108 

Cervetto and Garrick 442 

Chaconne, of Moorish origin ... 10 

Challoner, Thomas 299 

Champion Rene 234 

Chanot, Francois ' 234 

Chanot, F. 235 

Chanot, G. A 235 

Chanot, Georges, an indefati- 
gable and Excellent work- 
man ; copyist of Stradivari and 
Guarneri ; known also as a 

dealer 235 

Chanot, Georges (fils) 235 

Chappell, Arthur, his " Monday 

Popular Concerts " 402 

Chappuy, Nicolas- Augustin ... 235 

Chardon, Joseph 236 

Charles II. as a Musician ... 384 

Charotte... 236 

Cheli, or Chelys, The, de- 
scription and alleged origin of 15 
Chesterfield, Lord, his estimate 
of Fiddles and Fiddling ... 397 

" Chest of Viols " 194 

Chevrier, Andre- Augustin ... 236 

Christa, Joseph Paul ... ... 261 

Cinderella Violoncello, A ... 448 

Circapa, Tommaso 109 

Claudot, Augustin 236 

Claudot, Charles ... ... 236 

Clement ... 236 

Cliquot, Henri 236 

Cliquot, Louis Alexandre ... 236 

Cocco, Cristoforo 109 

Cole, James ... 299 

Cole, Thomas ... 299 

Collectors of Italian and other 

Violins ... ... 365 

Collier, Samuel 299 

Collier, Thomas 299 

Collingwood, Joseph 299 

Composers for the Violin, early 

English 381 

" Concerto of Violins " 194 



INDEX 



PAGE 

Construction of the Violin ... 27 

Contreras, Joseph 109 

Con way, William 299 

Cooper, Henry C., Violinist, and 

the Quartett Association ... 402 
Copyists, three kinds of, and 

their methods 144 

Corbett, William, an early col- 
ector of Italian Violins ; his 
Gallery of Cremonys and 

Stainers 365 

Cordano, Jacopo FilSppo ... no 
Corelli, his Sonatas, or "Balletti 

da Camera" 379 

Corsby 299 

Corsby, George 300 

Costa, Pietro Antonio dalla ... no 

Covered Strings 52 

Cozio, Count, patron of Mante- 
gazza, 152 ; purchaser of 

Stradivari's tools and models 361 
Cramer, William and Francois, 
Violinists, and the " Ancient 

Concerts " in London ... 401 

Cramond, Charles ... ... 300 

Crask, George 300 

Credulous Dabblers and Fiddle 

Marks 457 

Cremonese apathy as to Stradi- 
vari ... ... ... ... 215 

Cremonese Varnish, a "lost art" 71 

Crescent-formed Sound-hole ... 22 

Cristofori, Bartolommeo ... 109 

Cross Nathaniel 300 

Crowdero, The Champion, and 

Hudibras 410 

Crowther, John 300 

Cunault 256 

Cuny 256 

Cuthbert 300 

" Cutting " and maiming, 

Charles Reade on 248 

Cuypers 256 

D 

Dalla Valle, Marquis, possessor 
of Stradivari's tools and models 189 



Dando, Violinist, and the " Con- 
cert! da Camera" in London 401 

Daniel 237 

Darche 237 

Dardelli, Pietro, his Lutes and 

Viols no 

David 237 

Davidson 300 

Davis, Richard ... 300 

Davis, William 300 

Dearlove, Mark ... ... ... 300 

De Beriot and Maggini's 

Violins, 150 

Decadence of the Violin- 
maker's art, general causes of 286 
De Comble, Ambroise, probably 
a pupil of Stradivari ; good 
character of work, varnish, 

and tone 237 

Dehommais 238 

Delanoix 238 

Delany, John 300 

Delaunay 238 

Deleplanque, Gerard ... ... 238 

Del Gesu (see Guarneri) ... 232 

Dennis, Jesse 301 

Derazey ... 238 

Despine, A. in 

Despons, Antonine ... ... 238 

Devereux, John ... 301 

Dibdin, Charles, his early 

musical experiences 319 

Dichord of the Egyptian and 

Arabians ... 8 

Dickeson, John 301 

Dickinson, Edward 301 

Dieffopruchar, Magno (Magnus 

Tieffenbrucker) in 

Diehl, Friedrich... .... ... 262 

Diehl, Heinrich 262 

Diehl, Johann ... 262 

Diehl, Nicolaus 262 

Diel, Johann 262 

Diel, Jacob ... 262 

Diel (or Diehl), Martin 261 

Diel, Nicolaus 262 

Dieulafait, Viol-maker 238 



INDEX 



Ditton 301 

Dodd, Thomas, a dealer and 
employer of makers of high 
merit, and famous for his 

varnish... ... 301 

Dodd, Thomas (fils) 303 

" Dolphin Strad," The 200 

Dominicelli in 

Dopfer, Nicolaus 262 

Dorant, William 304 

Double-Basses and Violas the 
stepping-stones to Violin- 
making 25 

Dragonetti, his heavy strings ... 51 
Dragonetti's Gasparo da Salo ... 463 

Droulot 238 

Ducheron, Mathurin ... ... 238 

Duiffoprugcar, Gaspar, com- 
parison of his claims with 
those of Gaspar da Salo ; 
description of his work ... in 
Duke, Richard, one of the most 
distinguished of English 
makers, but often counter- 
feited 34 

Duke, Richard (/z/s) 35 

Du Mesnil, Jacques ... ... 238 

Duncan 35 

Durfel 262 



Earliest representation of 
stringed instruments 6 

Early history of Violin in- 
volved in obscurity . . ... I 

Early makers, their great care 
in selection of wood for the 
Violins 33 

Eastern origin of the Bow, 
alleged 4 

Eberle, J. Ulric, good copyist 
of Italian masters 262 

Eccles, John Henry, musician 
to Louis XIV. ; his solos for 
the Violin ... 3^5 

Eccles, Thomas, an itinerant 
Violinist 385 



PAGE 

Edlinger, Joseph Joachim ... 262 

Edlinger, T 262 

Eesbroeck, Jean Van 238 

Eglington 305 

Egyptian Obelisk, stringed in- 
struments on 6 

" Elector Stainers," The Twelve 275 
Elliston and George III. ... 444 

Elsler, Joseph 263 

Engel's " Researches into Early 

History of the Violin " ... 4 
English Makers, List of ... 293 

English makers, no mention of 

by continental writers on the 

Violin ... ... 284 

English School, The, 284 : 

causes of its decadence ... 285 
Ernst, Franz Anton ; an eminent 

Violinist, and pupil of Lolli ; 

also a maker 263 

Ernst, Herr, his exquisite style 

as a Violinist 409 

Ettrick Shepherd, The, and the 

Violin 482 

Eugene, Prince, and Stradivari 203 
European origin of the Violin n 

Evans, Richard 305 

Evelyn, John, on celebrity of 

old Lutinists ... ... 263 
Experiments as to tension of 

Violin strings 54 



Falaise, copied Amati and 
Stradivari ; good work ... 239 

Farinato, Paolo 112 

Felden, M 263 

Fendt (or Pent) 239 

Fendt, Bernard, an admirable 
workman, employed by Dodd 

and John Betts 305 

Fendt, Bernard Simon, a high- 
class maker Italian models ... 307 

Fendt, Francis 39 

Fendt, Jacob, clever copyist of 

Stradivari 3 8 

Fendt, Martin 38 

LL 



INDEX 



PAGE 

Fendt, William ... ... ... 309 

Ferguson, Donald ... ... 309 

Fesca, Violinist, and his quartetts 408 
Festing, Michael Christian, and 
the Philharmonic Society and 
Royal Society of Musicians... 398 
Fetis, M., his Eastern theory of 
the Bow, 14 ; his notice of 
Stradivari .. ... ... 177 

/-holes, or Sound-holes, their 

importance 40 

Fichtold, Hans 263 

Fichtl, Martin 263 

Ficker, Johann Christian ... 263 
Ficker, Johann Gottlieb ... 263 

Fiddle Marks and the Credulous 

Dabblers 457 

Fiddle Trade, The 483 

Finger-board, The 39 

Fiorillo, Giovanni 112 

Firth 309 

Fischer, Zacharie 263 

Flanders, early musical culture 

in 21 

Fleury, Benoist ... 239 

Forster, Simon Andrew ... 312 

Forster, William (i.), spinning- 
wheel and Violin-maker ... 309 
Forster, William (ii.), spinning- 
wheel and Violin-maker, and 
village Violinist ; copyist of 
Stainer, and of the Amatis ; 
excellent character of his 
work ; his instruments prized 

by Lindley 309 

Forster, William (iii.), excellent 
work and model ... ... 310 

Forster, William (iv.), good 

work 312 

Fountain, Mr., his collection of 
instruments ... ... ... 366 

" Four Corners " of the Violono 25 
Fourrier, Nicolas ... ... 239 

Francis I. of Austria, an ama- 
teur musician ... 498 

Frankland ... ... ... 313 

Frei, Hans ' ... 113 



PAGE 

French Makers, List of ... 231 

French School, the ; sketch of 
its Rise and Progress ... 224 

Fretted Viols 24 

Frey, Hans, Lute-maker, re- 
lated to Albert Durer ; his 
work praised by John Evelyn 263 

Fritzche ... ... 264 

"Fugal Vortex," The Prince 
and the ... ... ... 491 

Furber, copier of the " Betts " 
Stradivari ... ... ... 313 

Furber, Henry John 313 



Gabrielli, Giovanni Battista ... 113 
Gamno, Giuseppe ... ... 114 

Gagliano, Alessandro, pupil of 
A. Stradivari ; description of 
his work ... ... ... 114 

Gagliano, Antonio, Giovanni, 

Giuseppe, and Raffaele ... 116 
Gagliano, Ferdinando ... ... 116 

Gagliano, Gennaro ... ... 115 

Gagliano, Niccolo ... ... 115 

Gaillard, Charles 239 

Gaillard, J. B. ... 239 

Gainsborough as a Musician ... 438 

Galbusera, C. A. 116 

Ganassi, Silvestro, his work on 
the Viol ... ... ... 23 

Gand, Adolphe ... ... ... 241 

Gand, Eugene, partner with 

Bernadel Brothers 241 

Gand, Francois, pupil and son- 
in-law of Nicolas Lupot ; ex- 
cellent work, especially as a 
repairer ... ... ... 240 

Garani, Michel Angelo... ... 117 

Garani, Niccolo ... ... .. 117 

Gar rick and Cervetto ... ... 442 

Gasparo da Salo, reputed in- 
ventor of the four-stringed 
Violin, 26 ; the first great 
artistic maker, characteristics 

of his work 168-172 

Gatinari, Francesco ... ... 117 



INDEX 



Gavinies, Francois, old French 

School ; good quality ... 241 
Gavinie's, Pierre, his Concertos 

and Sonatas 393 

Gedler, Johann A. ... ... 264 

Gedler Johann B. ... ... 264 

Geissenhof, Franz ... ... 264 

Geige, The, derivation of ... 19 
Geminiani, Francesco, his So- 
natas and other works ... 387 

Gennaro, G., ... 117 

George III. and Elliston ... 4/14 
Gerbertus, Martinus, De Cantu 
et Musica Sacra ... ... 7 

Gerle, Johann, Lutes and Viols 264 

Germain, Emile 242 

Germain, Joseph Louis... ... 241 

German Makers, List of ... 259 

German origin of the Violin, 

early indications of ... 17, 18 

German School, The, its poverty 

as to makers of originality ... 258 
German Violins, no trace of in 

the time of Gasparo da Salo 25 
Geroni, Domenico ... ... 117 

Ghid ni, C. ... 117 

Giardini, Felice, composer and 

Violinist 389 

Gibbs, James 313 

Gibertini, Antonio, ... ... 117 

Gigeours, The, of Germany ... 20 
Gilkes, William, Double-Bass 

maker 314 

Gilkes, Samuel, pupil of Forster ; 

an excellent workman ... 313 
Gillott Collection, The ; its 
origin, character, and dis- 
persion 367-374 

Giorgi, N. 117 

Giustiniani, Lorenzo, his letter 

to Stradivari ... 206 

Gobetti (Gobit), Francesco, high 

character of his work ... 118 
Coding Collection, The ... 366 
Goding, Mr. James, his Stradi- 
vari with an alien scroll ; a 
curious coincidence 445 



Gofriller, Francesco 

Gofriller, Matteo 

Gosselin 

Gough, Walter :.. 

Gragnani, Antonio 

Grancino, Francesco ... 

Grancino, Giovanni 

Grancino, Giovanni Battista ... 

Grancino, Paolo, pupil of 
Niccolo Amati ; description of 
his work 

" Grand Amati " pattern, The... 

Grand-Gerad 

Grandson, Fils 

Graun, Violinist to the King of 
Prussia 

Griesser, Matthias 

Grimm, Carl 

Grobitz,A... 

Grosset, Paul Francois 

Gross-Geige, The 

Grulli, Pietro 

Guadagnini, Antonio 

Guadagnini, Carlo 

Guadagnini, Francesco and 
Giuseppe, now living at 
Turin ... 

Guadagnini, Gaetano 

Guadagnini, Giovanni Battista, 
pupil of Stradivari ; descrip- 
tion of his work 

Guadagnini, Giuseppe 

Guadagnini, Lorenzo, the first 
of his family ; high character 
of his work 

Guarneri, Andrea, the pioneer 
of his family ; pupil of Amati ; 
his Violins and Violoncellos 

Guarneri, at a discount 

Guarneri, Giuseppe (son of^ An- 
drea) ; originality of his style, 
and peculiarity of his sound- 
holes ; character of his 
varnish ; high va'ue of his 
Violins, Violas, and Violon- 
cellos 

Guarneri, Giuseppe (del Ge^ii) ; 



PAGE 

119 
119 
242 
3H 

I2O 

121 
121 
121 



120 

86 

2 4 2 

2 4 2 

403 
264 
264 
264 
242 

18 

121 
126 
126 



126 
125 



123 
125 



121 



126 

458 



129 



INDEX 



his peculiar cypher, prob- 
ably a pupil of his cousin 
Giuseppe, his fertility of de- 
sign, traditions as to his 
" prison Fiddles," three 
orders of copyists, Paganini's 

Guarneri, 132-147 

Guarneri, Pietro (brother of 
Giuseppe films Andrae) ; de- 
scription of his work... ... 131 

Guarneri, Pietro (son of Giu- 
seppe films Andrse) 132 

Guersan, Louis ... 242 

Gugemmos ... 264 

Guidanti, Giovanni (Joannis 
Guidantus), specimen at exhi- 
bition of Milan, 1881 ; cha- 
racter of his work ... ... 147 

Guillami 147 

Gunn, John, his essay on 
stringed instruments 7 

H 

Habeneck, Francois Antoine, 
composer ... ... ... 395 

Haensel, Johann A ... ... 264 

Hamberger, Joseph ... ... 264 

Hamm, Johann Gottfried ... 264 

Hammig, W. H 264 

Handel, George Frederick, and 
the Royal Society of Musi- 
cians, 399 ; influence of his 
works on Violin-playing ... 405 

Harbour 314 

Hardie, Matthew 314 

Hardie, Thomas 314 

Hare, John 314 

Hare, Joseph 314 

Harris Charles, an excellent 

copyist, Italian mode ... 315 

Harris, Charles (2), good cha- 

racterofwork ... 316 

Hart, John Thomas ; pupil of 
Samuel Gilke' ; distinguished 
as a connoisseur, dealer and 
collector ... ... ... 316 

Harton, Michael, Lute-maker... 264 



Hassert 

Hawkins, Sir John, his " History 
of Music," 7 ; his opinion of 

Stainer's merits ... ... 271 

Haydn, Joseph, his quartettes, 
and a Lady's humorous com- 
parison, 405 ; 406, Haydn in 
London ; Letters from Rev. 

T. Twining 435 

Haynes, J. 317 

Heesom, Edward 317 

Hel 242 

Helmer, Carl 265 

Henry, Charles 242 

Henry, Eugene 242 

Henry, Jean Baptiste ... ... 242 

Henry, Jean Baptiste Felix ... 242 

Henry, Octave ... 242 

Herbert, George, his references 

to music ... ... ... 420 

Hildebrandt, Michael C. ... 265 

Hill, Joseph 317 

Hill, Lockey 317 

Hill, William 317 

Hill, William Ebsworth ... 318 

Hiltz, Paul ... 265 

Hobby-horses, Laurence Sterne 

on 331 

Hoffmann, Johann Christian, 

Lutes and Viols 265 

Hoffman, Martin, Lutes and 

Viols 265 

Hofmans, Mathias ... ... 242 

Hogarth's " Line of Beauty " 

and the Violin 28 

Holloway, J 318 

Holmes, Henry and Alfred, 

Violinists ... ... ... 403 

Holmes, Olive Wendell, on the 

Violin 332 

Horil, Jacob 265 

Hornstainer ... ... ... 265 

Hornstainer, Joseph 265 

Hudibras and the Champion 

Crowdero ... ... ... 410 

Huller, Aug 265 

Humel, Christian 265 



INDEX 



PAGE 

Hume, Richard... 318 

Hunger, Christoph Friedrich ... 265 

I 

Illuminated MSS. of the Middle 
Ages, and other early evi- 
dence ... ... 12 

"II Per" (see Kuggeri, Fran- 
cesco) 165 

Indefatigable Violinist, An ... 495 

Individuality and affinity both 
evident in the work of the 
several Italian Schools % ... 67 

Influence of different varnishes 
on the tone of the Violin ... 75 

Instruction in Violin-playing, 
by Tartini 501 

Italian Makers, List of ... ... 77 

Italian School of Violin-playing 388 

Italian Varnishes ; the dif- 
ferent varieties described ... 70 

Italian Violins, five distinct 
Schools : The Brescian ; the 
Cremonese ; the Neapolitan ; 
Florence, Bologna and Rome; 
the Venetian .. 63 

Itinerant Musicians and the 
Violin 20, 386 

J 
"Jack of All Trades," Charles 

Reade's 322 

Jacobs ... ... ... ... 243 

Jacobs, Hendrik, a close imitator 

of Nicolas Amati 242 

Jacquot, Charles... ... ... 243 

Jacquot, Charles (fits) 243 

Jais, Johann ... ... ... 265 

Jauch, Johann ... ... ... 265 

Jay, Henry 318 

Jay, Henry, maker of Kits and 

Violoncellos ... 318 

Jay, Thomas 318 

Jeandel, P. N 243 

Jenkins, John, his twelve So- 
natas 381 



Joachim, Herr, and Bach's So- 
natas, 404 ; his high rank as 
a performer ... ... ... 409 

Johnson, Dr., on Collecting as 
a Hobby, 374 ; on the Violin 429 

Johnson, John, Violin and 
music-seller ; his relations 
with Charles Dibdin... ... 319 

Jongleurs, The ... ... ... n 



K 

Kambl, Johann A. 265 

Karb ... ... ... ... 265 

Kembter 265 

Kennedy, Alexander 320 

Kennedy, John ... 320 

Kennedy, Thomas 320 

Kerlino, Joan, Viol-maker ... 147 

Kiaposse, Sawes... ... ... 266 

Kirchschlag ... 266 

Klein-Geige, The 18 

Kloz, Egidius 266 

Kloz George 266 

Kloz, Joseph ... ... ... 266 

Kloz, J.Karl 266 

Kloz, Matthias, pupil of Stainer 
Kloz, Sebastian ; his work much 

esteemed - ... 266 

Knitting 266 

Knittle, Joseph 266 

Kohl, Johann 267 

Kolditz, J. 267 

Kolditz, Mathias Johann ... 267 

Koliker 243 

Kramer, H 267 

Kriner, Joseph ... ... ... 267 



Labels as Trade-marks some- 
times transferred ... 118,357 

Lafont, Violinist 394 

Lagetto, Luigi 147 

Lamb, Charles, and his 

" ragged veterans " ... ... 358 

Lambert, Jean Nicolas ... ... 243 



INDEX 



Lancetti, Vincenzo, extract 
from his MS. on Italian Violin- 
making 68 ; on Stradivari ... 1 88 
Landolfi, Carlo Ferdinando ; 

high character of his work ... 147 
Lane's " Modern Egypt," and 

theRebab 8 

"Lanza, Antonio Maria ... ... 148 

Lapaix ... ... ... ... 244 

Laprevotte, Etienne ... ... 244 

Laska, Joseph ... ... ... 267 

Lavazza, Antonio ... ... 148 

Lavazza, Santino ... ... 148 

Leclair, Jean Marie, Violinist 393 

Leclerc ... ... ... ... 244 

Lecomte ,.. ... ... ... 244 

Leduc, Pierre ... ... ... 244 

Lefebvre ... ... ... ... 244 

Leigh Hunt on Pagan ini ... 469 

Le Jeune, Francois 244 

Lentz, Johann Nicolaus ... 320 

Leonardo da Vinci as a Violist 375 

Le Pileur, Pierre 244 

Lesclop, Francois Henri ... 244 

Lewis, Edward ... ... ... 321 

Linarolli, Venture ... ... 148 

Lindley, Robert, character of 

his stringing ... ... ... 51 

Lipinski, composer ... ... 396 

Lister 321 

Living Stradivaris 495 

Locatelli as a composer ... 389 

Lolli, his "feats on one string" 389 

Loly, Jacopo 148 

Lombardini, Paolo, his pamph- 
let on Stradivari, 178 : his 
pedigree of Stradivari's family 179 
Lombardini,Signora Maddalena, 
letter from Tartini to, on the 
art of Playing the Violin ... 501 
Longman and Broderip, music- 
sellers ... ... ... ... 321 

" Long Strad," The 195 

Lott, George Frederick, a clever 

workman ... ... ... 322 

Lott, John Frederick, employed 
by Dodd, and a first-class 



PAGK 

workman ; high character of 
his Double-Basses ... :.. 321 
Lott, John Frederick (2), a 
clever copyist, and the original 
of Charles Reade's " Jack of 
all Trades " ... ... ... 322 

Louis ... ... ... ... 244 

Lou vet ... ... ... ... 244 

Lulli, Jean Baptiste, Violinist to 
Louis XIV. ; his influence as 
a composer ... ... ... 381 

Lupot, Francois... ... ... 244 

Lupot, Jean 244 

Lupot, Laurent ... ... ... 244 

Lupot, Nicolas ; famous as a 
copier of Stradivari ; maker 
to the Conservatoire ; genuine 
character of his work, as to 
form, varnish, and telling 
quality of tone 244 

M 

Mace, Thomas, on the prices and 

choice of Lutes and Viols ... 334 
Macintosh ... ... ... 332 

Madrigal, The, sixteenth century 21 
Maggini, Giovanni Paolo, 
pupil of Gasparo da Salo ; 
other makers' work fre- 
quently attributed to him ; 
comparison of his instruments 
with those of Gasparo ; De 
Beriot's use of his instru- 
ments ... 149 

Maler, Laux, Lute-maker (the 
" Stradivari of Lutes ") ; 
Thomas Mace on the prices 

of these instruments 150 

Mann, Hans ... ... ... 267 

Mantegazza, Pietro Giovanni, 

maker and repairer of Violins 

and Tenors ; good work ; 

patronised by Count Cozio ... 151 

Manuscripts, Illuminated, of the 

Middle Ages 12 

Maratti 152 

Marchetti 152 



INDEX 



Mariani, Antonio ... ... 152 

Marquis de Lair... ... ' ... 247 

Marshall ... .. ... ... 323 

Martin 323 

Mast, Jean Laurent ... ... 247 

Mast 247 

Maucotel, Charles 247 

Maucotel, Charles Adolphe ... 248 

Maussiell, Leonard ... ... 267 

Mayer (Maier), Andreas ... 267 

Mayseder, Joseph, Violinist ... 408 

Mayson, W. H 323 

Meares, Richard... ... ... 323 

Medard, Francois ... ... 248 

Medard, Jean ... 248 

Medard, Nicolas ... 248 

Meiberi, Francesco ... ... 152 

" Memoirs of Music," Roger 

North's 13 

Mendelssohn and Haydn as 

performers on the Violin ... 407 
Mennegand, Charles, distin- 
guished as a maker, and also 

as a repairer and " cutter "... 248 

Messeguer 152 

Meusidler, Johann ... ... 267 

Mezadri, Alessandro ... ... 152 

Mezadri, Francesco ... ... 159 

"Michael Schnapps," the Fiddle 

Ogre 487 

Mier 323 

Miremont, Claude Augustin, 

excellent work as a copyist... 249 

Missing Scroll, A 452 

Modena, Duke of, and Stradi- 
vari ... ... 191 

Modessier ... 249 

Mohr, Philip 267 

Moldonner ... 267 

Molique, Bernard, Violinist, and 

composer ... 408 

Monochord, Arabian invention 

of 7 

Montagnana, Domenico, pupil 
of Antonio Stradivari ; termed 
" the Mighty Venetian," ; his 
work frequently attributed to 



other great makers ; compari- 
son of work with that of his 
fellow-maker, Carlo Ber- 
gonzi ; increasing popularity 
of his instruments ; high 
character of his varnish 152-157 
Montagnana instrument shot 
through the body, A ... ... 456 

Montaldi, Gregorio 157 

Monteverde, Claudio, his opera 

"Orfeo" 378 

Morella, famous for Viols and 
Lutes ... ... ... ... 157 

Moorish influence on music in 

Spain 10 

Mori, Nicholas, Violinist, and 

the Royal Academy of music 401 
Morisca, or Morris Dance, The 10 
Mornington, Earl of, his early 

development of musical taste 399 
Morris Dance, The ... ... 10 

Morrison, John ... ... ... 323 

Mougenot, G. ... ... ... 250 

Mozart, Leopold, and his " Me- 
thod " for the Violin ; his 
early musical genius... ... 407 

Musical strings, materials used 

and places of manufacture ... 46 
Musicians, Royal Society of, its 

origin... 398 

" Musick's Monument " of 
Thomas Mace ... ... 150 

N 

Nadotti, Giuseppe 158 

Namy ... ... ... ... 250 

Naylor, Isaac ... ... ... 323 

Neck of the Violin, Form and 

material of ... ... ... 39 

Nella, Raffaele 158 

Netherlands, love of music in 

the 21 

Nezot ... ... 250 

Nicholls, E 323 

Nicolas, Didier, Stradivari 

copyist ; good tone ... ... 250 



520 



INDEX 



Nicolas, Francois (Nicolas Four- 

rier) ... ... ... ... 250 

Nicolas, Joseph ... ... ... 250 

Niggel, Simpertus 267 

Norborn, John ... ... ... 323 

Norman, Barak, his instru- 
ments best of old English cha- 
racter; worked with Nathaniel 
Cross ; follower of Maggini 

model 323 

Norris John 325 

North, Hon. Roger, his " Me- 
moirs of Music " ... ... 13 

Number of constituent parts of 

the Violin 35 

O 

Obelisk, Egyptian, stringed in- 
struments on ... 6 

Ohberg, Johann.. ... ... 267 

"Old Borax," and the Fiddle 

Trade 483 

Old Masters, their great care in 

selection of material 33 

Ole Bull and Fiddle varnish ... 500 

" Orfeo," The, of Monteverde... 378 

Orpheus and Apollo ... ... 3 

Orsini, Cardinal, and Stradivari 190 

Ortega 158 

Ott, Johann 268 

Otto, C. U. F 268 

Otto, Carl 268 

Otto,Christian 268 

Otto, Georg August 268 

Otto, Heinrtch 268 

Otto, Jacob August 268 

Otto, Ludwig 268 

Ouvrard, Jean ... 250 



Pacherele 250 

Pacherel, Michal 250 

Paganini's Guarneri Violin, 
where now deposited, and 
anecdote of, 340 ; extra- 
ordinary character of his 
work and career ... ... 392 



PAGE 

Paganini, Leigh Hunt on ... 469 

Pamphilon, Edward 325 

Pandolfi, Antonio 158 

Panormo, George Lewis ... 325 
Panormojoseph, excellent work 325 

Panormo, Louis ... 325 

Panormo, Vincenzo ; follower 
of Antonio Stradivari, and 
famous as a genuine copyist ; 
his struggles with adversity ; 
comparison of his work with 

that of Lupot 158 

Pansani, Antonio ... ... 160 

Paolo Veronese, his picture of 

" The Marriage of Cana" ... 376 
Parker, Daniel, a good Old 
English maker ... ... 325 

Parth, Andreas Nicholas ... 268 

Pasta, Antonio 160 

Pasta, Domenico ... ... 160 

Paul, Saint ... ... ... 250 

Pazzini, G. ... 160 

Pearce, James 326 

Pedigree of the family of An- 
tonio Stradivari 179 

Pemberton, Edward 326 

Perry and Wilkinson, good 

quality and finish 326 

Pfretzschner, Carl Friedrich ... 269 

Pfretzschner, Gottlob 268 

Philharmonic Society, and Mi- 
chael C. Festing 398 

Philip V. of Spain, his visit to 

Cremona 204 

Phillips, a Welsh Violinist, Dr. 
Johnson's Epitaph on ... 431 

Picino, G 160 

Pierray, Claude, excellent work, 
Italian character, good var- 
nish ; an example possessed 

by Tom Britton 250 

Piete, N 251 

Pique, F. L., copyist of Stradi- 
vari, school of Lupot ; good 
material and workmanship... 251 

Pirot, Claude 252 

Plack, F 269 



INDEX 



521 



Plafner, Michel, resemblance 

of his work to that of Tecchler 160 

Pleasures of Imagination ... 497 

Plectrum, Reference to... ... 5 

Plowden Collection, The . . 367 

Pollitzer, Adolphe 396 

Pollusca, Antonio ... ... 161 

Pons, Cesar 252 

Pons, Guitar-maker 252 

Pope Pius IX. and the musician 499 

Porlon, Peeter (or Borlon) ... 233 

Possen, L. ... ... ... 269 

Postiglione, V. ... ... ... 161 

Powell 326 

Pressenda, Giovanni Francesco, 
high character of his work, 
and especially of his varnish ; 
his instruments of Amatese 

and Stradivarian models ... 161 

Preston, John 327 

Prices of Violins, &c., at various 

periods 334-338 

" Prison Fiddles," of Guarneri 

del Gesu 140 

Progress of the Violin 375 

Provence and the origin of the 

Geige ... 18 

Ptolomeus, Claudius, on Har- 
monic Sounds... 6 

Puppo, Violinist, Anecdote of... 495 

Purcell, Henry, his Sonatas, ... 383 
Purfling of the Violin, 40 ; of 

the Brothers Amati 84 

Q 

Quack Violin-Doctors ... ... 41 

Quantz, Johann, Flautist, and 

Frederick the Great ... ... 269 

Quartett Association, The ... 402 

R 

Rabenalt, Theodore, his drama, 

" Jacob Stainer " 277 

Racceris ... ... 163 

Rambaux, Claude Victor ; a 

clever repairer 252 

Ranee, T 252 



Rauch ... 269 

Rauch, Jacob ... ... ... 269 

Rauch, Sebastian 269 

Raut, Jean 252 

Ravanon, King of Ceylon, and 
his instrument called the 
" Ravanastron " ... ... 4 

Rawlins, Henry, patronised by 

Giardini 327 

Rayman, Jacob, founder of 
English Violin-making ; good 
character of work and varnish 327 
Reade, Charles, on the " Four 
Corners" of the Violono, 25; 
on the Violins of Stradivari, 
201 ; on the art of " cutting," 
249 ; his letter on the Betts 
Stradivari ... ... ... 467 

Rebab, taken to Spain by the 

Moors, 7 ; in Egypt 8 

Rebec, Origin of 7 

Reichel, Johann Conrad ... 269 
Reichel, Johann Gottfried ... 269 
Reichers, August ... ... 269 

Remy 252 

Remy, Jean Mathurin 252 

Remy, Jules 252 

Renaudin, Leopold ... ... 252 

Renault, Nicolas ... 252 

Ribeca, alleged Arabian origin 7 

Richards, Edwin 328 

Riess 269 

Rinaldi, Gioffredo 163 

Rivolta, G 164 

Rocca, G. A ... 164 

Rode, Violinist and composer, 
his Caprices and Concertos, 
and his Instruction Book ... 394 

Rodiani, G. 164 

Rogeri, Giovanni Battista, 
pupil of Niccolo Amati ; his 

work highly valued 164 

Rogeri, Pietro Giacomo, pupil 
of N. Amati ; good work ; 
excellent varnish ... ... 165 

Rogers, Dr. Benjamin, his four- 
part Airs for Violins 381 



522 



INDEX 



Rombouts, Peeler 
Rook, Joseph 
Roscher, C. 
Ross, John 
Rosse (or Ross) ... 
Rota, Giovanni ... 
Roth, Christian ... 



PAGE 
252 
328 
269 
328 
328 
164 
269 



Rousseau, Jean, his Treatise on 

the Viol 3 

Rovetta... 164 

Royal Amateur, A. ... ... 498 

Royal Band of Charles II. ; its 

poverty 382 

Royal Society of Musicians, 

Origin of 398 

Roze 253 

Ruf, Herr S., his History of 

Jacob Stainer 275 

Ruggeri, Francesco (" II Per "); 
excellent character of work- 
manship, design, and varnish ; 
pupil of Niccolo Amati ... 165 

Ruggeri, Giacinto 167 

Ruggeri, Giambattista, high- 
class work in Violins, Violas, 
and Violoncellos ... ... 167 

Ruggeri, Vincenzo 167 

Ruppert, Franz 269 

Ruppert, J. N 269 



Sacchini, S 168 

Sacquin 253 

Sainprae, Jacques ... ... 269 

Sainton, M., Violinist 

Salabue, Count Cozio di, his 
passion for and collection of 
Violins, 359 ; his correspon- 
dence relative to his purchase 
of the reliques of Antonio 
Stradivari ... ... ... 360 

Sale of Cremonese Instruments 

in 1790... 493 

Salle, a clever restorer... ... 253 

Salo, Gasparo da ... 168-170 

Salomon, Jean Baptiste, maker 253 



Salomon, Violinist, his concerts 
in London ; his negotiations 

with Haydn 400 

San Domenico, Cremona, burial- 
place of Stradivari 212 

Sanoni, Giovanni Battista ... 172 
Sanscrit Literature, References 

to the Violin in ... ... 5 

Santo, Giovanni ... ... ... 172 

Sanzo, Milan ... ... ... 172 

Saraband, Moorish ... ... 10 

Sardagna, Counsellor von, his 
contribution to Jacob Stainer's 

history ... ... 276 

Sardi 172 

Saunier 253 

Savart, his paper on the con- 
struction of bow instruments 234 

Sawicki 270 

Saxon Fiddle, in the Cottonian 

MSS 16 

Scandinavian origin of the 

Violin, alleged ... 13 

Scheinlein, Johann Michael ... 270 

Scheinlein, Mathias F. ... ... 270 

Schell, Sebastian 270 

Schlick ... ... 270 

Schmidt ... 270 

Schnoeck, Egidius 253 

Schonfelder, Johann A. ... 270 

Schonger, Georg 270 

Schonger, Franz 270 

Schorn, Johann, an excellent 

maker 271 

Schorn, Johann Paul ... ... 271 

Schott, Martin, Lute-maker ... 271 
Schuler, Dr. Johann, his novel, 

" Jacob Stainer " 276 

Schwartz ... ... .. ... 271 

Schweitzer ... ... ... 271 

Scott, Sir Walter, on Music and 

Fiddles 446 

Scroll, A Wandering ... ... 455 

Seltas, Matteo, Lute-maker ... 172 
Serafino, Santo (Sanctus Sera- 
phin), famed for exquisite 
finish ; German and Italian 



INDEX 



523 



models ; excellent varnish and 
handsome wood, but style 
inferior, and lacking origin- 
ality 172 

Shaw, Dr. his "Travels in the 

East" 7 

Shaw 328 

Silvestre, Hippolyte ... ... 254 

Silvestre, Hippolyte Chretien ... 254 

Silvestre, Pierre, copyist of 

Stradivari, of high order and 

exquisite finish ; fellow 

worker with Lupot and 

Gand 253 

Simon ... ... ... ... 254 

Simonin ... ... ... ... 254 

Simpson ... ... ... ... 328 

Simpson, Dr. Christopher, 
Anecdote of ... ... ... 423 

Sivori, Camillo, his high artistic 

career ... ... 392 

" Skit," A musical 425 

"Slab-back" and "Whole-back," 

The 32 

Smith, Henry 328 

Smith, Thomas 328 

Smith, William 328 

Sneider, Josefo ; many of Giro- 
lamo Amati's instruments 
attributed to this maker ... 174 
Socchi, Vincenzo ... ... 174 

Socquet, Louis 254 

" Sonata del Diavolo," Tartini's 427 
Sonatas, Earliest appearance of 379 

Sorsanaly ... ... 174 

Sound-bar, oblique position of, 

35 ; its purpose and character 36 
Sound-holes, crescent-shaped, 
22 ; of Gasparo and Amati, 80 ; 
shape and importance of ... 40 
Sound-post, its purpose and 
service, 36 ; its position, 37 ; 

methods of fixing 38 

Spohr, Louis, Violinist and 
composer ; his Quartets and 

Duets 408 

Spohr and his Guarneri ... 478 



PAGE 

Spohr and the Collector ... 480 
"Sports and Pastimes." 

Strutt's 16 

Stadelmann, Daniel 271 

Stadelmann, Johann Joseph ... 271 

Stainer, Andreas 280 

Stainer, Jacob, the greatest of 
German artists ; his popu- 
larity ; Sir John Hawkins' 
estimate of his work ; origin- 
ality and peculiarity of his 
model ; variation in style ; 
his " Elector Stainers " ; his 
personal history, by Herr S. 
Ruf and Counsellor von 
Sardagna ; Dr. Johann Schu- 
ler's novel, "Jacob Stainer" ; 
his marriage ; his imprison- 
ment for heresy ; his poverty 
and sad death ; his numerous 
followers and libellists 271-280 

Stainer, Markus ... 280 

Statlee 174 

Staugtinger, Mathias ... ... 281 

Steininger, Franz ... ... 281 

Steininger, Jacob 281 

Sterne, Laurence on Hobby- 
horses ... ... ... ... 331 

Stolen " Strad," A 449 

Storioni, Lorenzo, follower of 
Guarneri del Gesu ; his freak 
as to placing the sound-holes; 
his Violins roughly finished, 
but valued for acoustical pro- 
perties 174 

Stoss 281 

Stoss, Martin 281 

Stradivari, Antonio, date of 
birth, 178 ; Paolo Lombars- 
dini's pamphlet on his life, 
185 ; his marriage, and pedi- 
gree of his family, 178-179 ; 
affinity of his work with that 
of his master, Niccolo Amati, 
182 ; second epoch, and 
change of style, 189-190 ; 
possessor of the tools and 



524 



INDEX 



models of N. Amati, 184 ; his 
house at Cremona, 187 ; ex- 
tracts from Desiderio Arisi, 
185 ; Vincenzo Lancetti on 
the purchase of Stradivari's 
models and tools by Count 
Cozio di Salabue ; the letters 
of Paolo and Antonio Stradi- 
vari, junior, in reference 
thereto, 188 ; splendid cha- 
racter of his varnish, 198; 
Cardinal Orsini's and the 
Duke of Modena's patronage, 
190-191 ; the " Long Strad," 
195; his work for the Spanish 
Court and for the GrandDuke 
of Tuscany, 193 ; letter of 
Marquis Ariberti, 193 ; a 
" Concerto of Violins," 194 ; 
the "golden period," 197 ; the 
" Betts Strad," 466 ; varia- 
tions in qualities of wood, 200; 
the " Dolphin Strad," 200 ; 
Prince Eugene and war in 
Cremona, 203 ; visit of Philip 
V. of Spain to Italy, and entry 
into Cremona, 204; Stradi- 
vari's instruments for presen- 
tation to Philip 204, and to the 
Archduke Charles of Austria, 
206 ; letter of Lorenzo Giusti- 
niani to Stradivari, 206 ; cha- 
racteristics of the instruments 
of his later period, 209-211 ; 
place of his burial, 2 12-2 14; in- 
difference of Stradivari's own 
townsmen as to his remains, 
215; further notice of Count 
Cozio di Salabue relative to 
the Stradivari reliques, ... 359 

Stradivari, Francesco, son and 
successor of Antonio ; ex- 
cellent character of work, 
age, and date of death 217, 218 

Stradivari, Omobono, successor 
to the business of his father 
Antonio ... 218 



Stradivari, Paolo, cloth mer- 
chant ; his correspondence 
with Count Cozio di Salabue 
relative to the Stradivari 
reliques ... ...219, 360-364 

Straube 281 

Strauss, Joseph ... ... ... 281 

Stregner, Magno, Lute-maker... 174 
Strings, Italian and other, 
causes of variation in the 
quality of, how to choose 
them, material used in their 
manufacture, experiments on 
the tension of ... ... 43~56 

Sursano, Spirito... ... ... 219 



Tanegia, Carlo Antonio ... 219 

Taningard, Giorgio 219 

Tarisio, Luigi, and his collection 
of Violins; his singular career 
and character, and painful end 

344-356 

Tarr, W 328 

Tartini, Giuseppe ; his musical 
compositions; high opinion of 

Dr. Burney on 388 

Tartini, Signer, on the treat- 
ment of the Violin 501 

Taylor, meritorious work ... 329 

Tecchler 219 

Tedesco 220 

Tension and pressure of Violin 

Strings 54 

Testore, Carlo Antonio, excel- 
lent work 220 

Testore, Carlo Giuseppe ... 220 

Testore, Giovanni, 220 

Testore, Paolo Autoaio, ... 220 

Teutonic origin of the Violin ... 17 

Thackeray on Orchestral Music 471 

Theress, Charles 254 

Thibout, Jacques Pierre, a well- 
known dealer, and excellent 
workman ; his relations with 

Luigi Tarisio ... 254 

Thomassin ... ... ... 254 



INDEX 



525 



PAGE 
329 
329 
25 
22O 
28l 



Thompson 

Thorowgood, Henry ... 
Three-stringed Violins... 
Tieffenbrucker, Leonardo 

Tieffenbrucker 

Tielke, Joachim, Lute and 
Guitar-maker ; magnificent 
ornamentation of his work ... 281 
Tielke, Joachim, Viol and Violin- 
maker, examples in the 
Kensington collection ... 282 

Tilley, Thomas 329 

Tobin 329 

Tobin, Richard 329 

Todini, Michael, his musical 
clock-work, and new mode 
of stringing the Violono ... 220 
Tononi, Carlo Antonio ... ... 221 

Tononi, Carlo, excellent work 

and varnish 221 

Tononi, Felice 222 

Tononi, Giovanni, high-class 

work 222 

Tononi, Guido 222 

Traditional History of Cre- 
monese makers (see Ceruti, 

Enrico) 108 

Trapani, Raffaele 222 

Trinity in Unity, Musical illus- 
tration of 423 

Troubadours and Trouveres ... 10 
Tywersus... 254 

U 

Urquhart, Thomas ; high-class 
work and excellent varnish ... 329 



Vaillant, Francois 
Valentine William 
Valenzano, G. M. 
" Varnish, Dodd's " 



254 
329 

222 
302 



Varnish, Italian, that of the 
several Schools compared 70 

Venetian Catlins 46 

Veracini, Solo Violinist, G. B. 208, 379 
Volumier, and Stradivari ... 208 



Veronese, Paolo, his " Marriage 

atCana" 375 

Veron, Pierre ... ... ... 255 

Vetrini, Battista ... 222 

Vibrecht, Gysbert 255 

Vieuxtemps, Henri, his Con* 

certos ... ... 396 

Vimercati, Paolo 222 

Viola da Braccia, The 13 

Viola di Bordone, The 270 

Violin, construction of the, 27; 
three-stringed, 25 ; four- 
stringed, 26 ; acoustical pro- 
perties of the 30 

Violin, Tartini on the art of 

Playing 501 

Violins, from a medical point 

of view 424 

Violin, The, and its Votaries 331 
Violinist, An indefatigable ... 495 
Violono, or Bass- Viol, of Gas-^ 
paro da Salo ... ... ... 24 

Viols, Ancient, by Hieronymus 

Brensius 103 

Viols in connection with Madri- 
gal and with Church Service 21, 377 
Viotti, Giovanni Battista, high 

character of his compositions 390 
Voel, E., excellent character of 

work 282 

Vogel 283 

Vogler, Johann Georg ... ... 283 

Voigt, Martin 283 

Voleme (Volumier), G. B , 
musical director to the King 
of Poland, and Stradivari's 

set of twelve Violins 207 

Vuillaume, Claude Francois ... 255 

Vuillaume, Jean 255 

Vuillaume, J. B., a prolific 
maker and excellent work- 
man, 255; his association with 
Tarisio, and purchase of his 

collection ... 356 

Vuillaume, N. F., maker and 
connoisseur ... ... ... 255 

Vuillaume, Sebastien ... ... 255 



526 



INDEX 



w 

Wagner, Joseph 283 

Wamsley, Peter, high-class 

English maker ... ... 329 

Wandering Scroll, A 455 

Waterloo Purse, Stradivarius 
winner of the 

Weickert 283 

Weigert ... 283 

Weiss, Jacob 283 

Wenger, G. F 283 

Wenger, Lute-maker ... ... 222 

Widhalm (or Withalm), Leo- 
pold, a high-class imitator of 

Stainer 283 

Wieniawski, Henri ... ... 396 

Willaert, Adrian, the "Father 

of the Madrigal" 21 

Wise, Christopher ... ... 329 

Wish, A 495 

Withers, Edward 329 



Withers, Edward (2) ... 

Witting, J. G 

"Wolf-notes" ... 
Woods, various, used in the 
manufacture of the Violin... 
Wordsworth's " Blind Fiddler" 
Wyemann, Cornelius ... 



I'AC.K 

330 

283 

36 

31 

283 



Young, father and son, 
Purcell's catch 



and 



330 



Zannetto, Viol-maker ... ... 222 

Zanola 222 

Zanoli ... ... ... ... 223 

Zanotti, A. 223 

Zanti, Alessandro ... ... 223 

Zanure, Viol-maker ... ... 223 

Zenatto ... ... 223 

Zwerger, Antonio ... ... 283 







Ube (Bresbam press, 

UNWIN BROTHERS, LIMITED, 
WOKING AND LONDON. 



ML Hart, George 
802 The violin 
H32 
1909 

Music 



J 

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